To all residents of Colebrook:
OLD CREAMERY ROAD
Effective 21 August 2023
Old Creamery Road will be closed to all traffic between Ruth Cross Road and the intersection of Robertsville Road and Old Forge Road.
NJR Construction will begin the replacement of the Bridge Deck on the Old Creamery Road Bridge the crosses over the Still River.
Detour signs will mark the detour routes.
To All Colebrook Residents:
Yesterday the State of Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) approved the Metropolitan District’s (MDC) application to abandon its rights to use approximately 10 billion gallons of water stored between elevation 644 feet and 701 feet with in the Colebrook River Lake (aka Colebrook Reservoir). The MDC will still own the rights to 3.5 billion gallons of water stored behind the Colebrook River Dam. The permit was granted and is subject to many conditions identified in the Source Permit. The MDC , Save the Sound, and the Northwest Connecticut Land Conservancy (NCLC) executed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that commits the MDC to granting a conservation easement to the NCLC on 5,500 acres of open space land that surrounds Colebrook River Lake Reservoir. The question that I am sure you all have is what happens to the land? It will have an easement on it that will preserve and protect the land in perpetuity, the MDC will still own the land and has to own the land. In accordance the CT Gen Statute 12-76., the MDC will still be required to pay taxes on the land that they own in Colebrook, assessed at what would be its fair market value were it assessed as improved farmland. That is how the land is currently assessed “Improved Farmland”.
I am sure this news will raise a lot of questions. Before you call or send me an e-mail, please read the DPH Source Abandonment Permit. The Source Abandonment Permit contains a lot of detail and rationalizes why and the process that the DPH used to approve the MDC application.
Chris Johnstone First Selectman
To All Colebrook Residents,
The emerald ash borer and the natural aging of our trees in Colebrook has taken a toll. In the past year or so, regardless of the weather, the trees along the sides of our roads have been dropping their limbs or just plain falling down. Add a wet heavy snow storm and some wind and the dynamics really change. In the past few weeks there have been so many limbs and trees involving power lines that I have lost count. My real concern is that many of the trees and limbs that have fallen have completely blocked the roads without notice. My worst fear is that a tree may hit a car or person and cause a collision or an injury. Our DPW folks have been diligent in trying to identify and cut as many trees that pose a problem. They have also been busy cleaning up debris that has fallen. Unfortunately it seems as though trees and limbs are falling faster than they clear them up. So far this year the Town has spent $73,000., on tree removal. This does not take into account the amount of trees that the DPW folks have taken down and removed. It is a huge expense and a subject that I am going to address at the Annual Budget Hearing on Thursday evening at 7:00PM.
As an example, in the last week, a limb fell and completely blocked Sandy Brook Road, the results of that weren’t good. This weekend on Saturday a tree uprooted and fell on the power lines on Smith Hill Road and on Sunday a tree uprooted and fell on the power lines on Deer Hill Road. In the last case the road was partially blocked by the trees creating a very dangerous situation. I might add that it isn’t just trees that are falling down. A week ago Sunday, a utility pole fell down bringing the wires with it completely blocking Schoolhouse Road. This wasn’t noticed right away as none of the residents lost power. The wires were still live, laying on the ground. Please remain away from downed live power lines.
So I ask for everyone’s help, if you see a dangerous tree or limb that needs to be taken down please call or send an e-mail to me at the Town Hall. If there are power lines involved, especially if they are live and arcing on the ground please call 911 and report the dangerous situation. In the meantime our DPW will continue to address the tree situation and work to keep our community safe.
In the Meantime… Every four years Eversource conducts vegetation management in the town. This year in conjunction with Lewis Tree they will once again be evaluating vegetation and trees that are a hazard to the power grid infra-structure. I have spoken to the Lewis Tree representative and our Eversource Liaison and they will be canvassing the neighborhoods for dangerous trees and vegetation in the town owned right of way. If they see a tree that needs to be trimmed or removed they will place a card at your residence advising you of the recommend action and asking for permission to remove the danger. I ask that you please give your permission. The more trees that we can get trimmed or removed helps avoid electrical power interruptions, dangerous situations that are created when a tree or limb falls into the roadway.
As always, please feel free to call me here at the Town Hall or send an e-mail.
To all Residents:
Sandy Brook Road is now closed to all thru traffic. I discussed many of the concerns that folks have voiced over the placement of the detour signs and the detour routes with NJR Construction and the Engineering firm (GM-2) this morning. NJR is going to place a barricade just before the intersection of Beech Hill and Sandy Brook Road, which will say that the Bridge is closed “Local Traffic” only. The residents and service vehicles will be able to pass around this barricade but hopefully this will prevent non local traffic from traveling down to the bridge. The same type of barricade will be placed at the intersection of Sandy Brook Road and Route 8. We’ll see how this works and if any other adjustments are needed, NJR is more than willing to make any necessary changes. Please be patient, it may take a few days for everyone to get adjusted to the detour.
On another note the DPW has opened the dirt portion of Beech Hill Road down to Route 8. When the weather allows, and the road dries out a bit, the DPW will grade the road. Right now it is too wet to re-grade the road, again I am asking for everyone’s patience with this situation as well.
As always, if there are any questions or concerns, please give me a call
Old Creamery Road and Sandy Brook Road Bridge Preservation / Replacement
Town of Colebrook
Colebrook First Selectman Christopher Johnstone, announced today that construction on Project number 29-104 will begin on April 1, 2023. The project was awarded to NJR Construction, LLC, of Torrington, on March 8, 2023. The project involves the total replacement of Bridge No. 05141, Sandy Brook Rd. over Sandy Brook, and the preservation of Bridge No. 05146, Old Creamery Rd. over the Still River.
With a contract duration of 217 days, and a construction start date of April 1st, 2023, an estimated completion date of November 4th, 2023, is anticipated. By contract, Sandy Brook Road can be closed for the entire 217 days. Construction will begin on April 1st, 2023. This will require the bridge to be closed and traffic will have to detour around the construction site. The major detour routes for this project will be accomplished by using Deer Hill Road, Smith Hill and Colebrook Road (Route 183). Minor construction activities have already begun with the placement of new utility poles and signage.
The Old Creamery Road preservation project is expected to take 120 construction days and by contract the bridge can be closed for 120 consecutive days. At this point it is anticipated to allow alternating one way traffic. If it is necessary to close the bridge to traffic, a notice will be posted 14 days prior to the closing. Both construction sites will be posted with clearly marked detour signs.
Project number 029003
Pinney Street Bridge
First Selectman Christopher Johnstone has also announced that a legal notice with an invitation to bid on the Pinney Street Bridge has been advertised in the Waterbury Republican and posted on the Town of Colebrook web site. The timeline for the submission of bids is March 29th, 2023. Hopefully the project can be awarded quickly with construction of the bridge beginning later in the spring.
TOWN OF COLEBROOK
Notice is hereby given that a signed copy of the Agreement between Regional School District No. 7 Board of Education and Northwestern Teachers’ Association of Regional School District No. 7 2023 – 2026 has been filed with the Town Clerk and is available for public inspection during regular office hours.
Notice is also hereby given that a signed copy of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Northwestern Administrators’ Association and The Board of Education of Regional School District No. 7 dated July 1, 2023 through June 30, 2026 has been filed with the Town Clerk and is available for public inspection during regular office hours.
Dated at Colebrook, Connecticut this 22nd day of December, 2022.
Debra L. McKeon, MCTC
(Legal notice per 10-153d of the CGS, Agreement received 12/22/2022 – 30 days expires on 01/22/2023).