The Waterbury Green, unique in its history and cultural significance, will soon have one more thing that sets it apart: Free WiFi.
     A $4 million Green and Downtown Streetscape Project – part of Mayor Neil M. OLeary’s comprehensive vision for a new downtown – will include free WiFi on the Green.
    Mark Lombardo, Provisional Supervisor of Parks and Golf Courses for the City, explained the Green and Downtown Streetscape Project – components of the Mayor’s $20 million public-private Waterbury NEXT initiative – to the City’s Board of Aldermen at a meeting Monday night.
   The $600,000 Green plan is part of the $4 million state-funded Streetscape Project. O’Leary believes the installation of public WiFi on the Green, which will allow people to connect to the internet for free, will attract students, downtown   workers and bring more people to the space.
   Mayor O’Leary’s vision is to improve public-realm infrastructure in downtown through new pavement, curbing and curb alignment, plantings, lighting improvements, pavers and better drainage. It will connect the Green with other destinations in Waterbury’s Downtown Business District, including Library Park, the Train Station, UCONN, the Palace Theater, the Mattatuck Museum and businesses along these streets.
   The Mayor’s plan is to enhance the utilization of the existing sidewalks along the streets that radiate from the Green by making them more walkable and widening them to allow sidewalk dining in front of restaurants. The free WiFi is just one component of the Mayor’s concept of a Green that welcomes and encourages pedestrian traffic among the downtown destinations by making it efficient, safe and a more pleasant experience.
   The City will rely on input from downtown merchants in implementing the plan.