Danbury Mayor Joe Cavo joined a radio show last week and answered questions about why businesses struggle in the Hat City.

The Mayor was asked specifically about Main Street businesses and why he believes it is difficult to keep the doors open for a business in the heart of the Hat City. Cavo responded:

"I think it's a phenomena, I'm really not entirely sure what it is. We hear about so many different things downtown, there are so many exciting things going on. We have a great City Center that works with their businesses. They all can be a member of that board and they all can participate and give their input on how they see City Center developing. You know, when I became a councilman 18 years ago, we had just received a long study that was done that said, 'look the way you are going to save downtown is by bringing in market rate housing'."

He continued by saying, "You have to have people downtown to want to go downtown. I remember when we did Kennedy Flats project and I had friends, very close, dear friends who said to me you'll never rent fifteen units out of that building. That building will stand as a big empty structure, no one will ever rent in it. You know, we luckily had the vision and didn't see it that way and now that building is at full occupancy with a waiting list."

He finishes his thoughts with optimism of the downtown area. "We now have the project going on across the street, the old News Times site and there's some other exciting developments that are happening downtown that are going to bring some more market rate housing there. I think that's the start to this. I think that when you have the people there, businesses will come because people down there will use those businesses."

Later, the Mayor brought up the City's transportation project remarking:

"Plus we are working on that train spur directly to New York City out of Danbury, that study is happening right now. And we're excited about the prospects of that. That will completely change downtown Danbury."

You can listen to the Mayor's (1/21/21) interview below.

Photo: Lou Milano
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