Towns

Town of Monkton

The town of Monkton wants to turn the Monkton Central School's lower parking lot into a municipal park and ride. The select board recently hosted a public discussion on the topic, and outlined specifics of a park and ride proposal.

Kirstin LaMonde Photography / Circus Smirkus residency

Fifteen Vermont nonprofit arts organizations will receive a combined $946,300 in federal funding through the National Endowment for the Arts' spring grant round, with $704,300 going to the Vermont Arts Council for programs that benefit Vermont residents.

The Vermont Forest Fire Supervisor has issued a statewide ban on burning brush. Vermont is named the number one state for working moms by WalletHub. Brookfield is planning a big celebration for the reopening of its famous floating bridge.

Vermont Agency of Transportation

Brookfield is taking two days later this month to celebrate the re-opening of the town's famous floating bridge. In fact, this will be Brookfield's eighth floating bridge — and this time, it's expected to be 100 years before the bridge needs replacement.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Like many small towns in Vermont, Norwich is trying to manage future development to meets the needs of all residents, not just the well-heeled. So town planners are inviting feedback about possible zoning changes in this Upper Valley community.

In Dorset, residents voted down controversial changes to the town’s zoning bylaws 513 to 344.  

Select board members had approved a number of amendments, including banning chain-based businesses, as well as allowing larger buildings to be constructed in certain parts of town.  

Many local residents felt expanding the allowable footprint of new construction would harm Dorset’s historic character and hurt property values – and they gathered enough signatures to put the issue before voters.

Nina Keck / VPR

It’s the classic Vermont conundrum: how to protect the picturesque quality of a community yet promote economic development? Right now it’s a debate that’s playing out in Dorset.

Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development

Vermont's seasonal iconography consists of fall foliage, ski resorts in winter, maple sugaring in spring, and village greens in the summertime. Many of the state's villages and towns were built up around their central greens, but since then some greens have fallen by the wayside.

Skip Brown

Voters in Fairlee, West Fairlee and Thetford will decide next month whether to finance a new dam over Lake Fairlee. The old one is in bad shape and the owner, a Maine resident, can’t afford to replace it. The re-design process has hit a few snags but community leaders in charge of the project are confident it will go forward.

Engineers warn that if the dam fails, water levels would drop so much so much that lakefront property would border on mud flats.

A Windham County initiative aims to convert 20 public buildings to wood heat. Vermont's 45th annual Green Up Day is Saturday, May 2. The law that allowed for the creation of town and city forests in Vermont turns 100 this year.

Chloe Boyce / Green Up Vermont

Saturday, May 2 will be the 45th annual Green Up Day in Vermont. The first Green Up Day was held in April 1970, just days before the first Earth Day. Now the annual event is held the first Saturday in May.

VPR

One hundred years ago, Vermont lawmakers passed a Municipal Forest Law allowing for the creation of town forests. Next week a year-long celebration gets underway to commemorate the 1915 law and Vermont's tradition of  towns owning and managing their own forests for public benefit.

Windham Wood Heat has announced plans to convert 20 schools and other public buildings to locally-sourced wood heat. That announcement came last week from the Brattleboro-based Sustainable Energy Outreach Network. The state has awarded the network $1.6 million to get the job done.

Johnson considers form-based codes for its village center. Trails are closed to snowmobiles and high-elevation hikers. Drivers are warned to beware of moose and amphibians. Wallingford announces its 17th annual bike safety day.

A&D Klumb Environmental / VTel

Vermont is the largest per-capita recipient of federal funds for broadband expansion, with much of the money going to the Springfield-based Vermont Telephone Company (VTel) to build a statewide wireless broadband network.

The build-out is aided by a state law that makes it possible to circumvent local zoning laws to erect telecommunications towers — and Calais is the latest community to confront the tension between local control and state’s desire to expand broadband service.

Princigalli / iStock

Wallingford residents take bike safety seriously, and have for quite some time. Right now organizers are getting ready for the town's 17th annual Wallingford Community Bike Safety Day.

Town of Johnson

"Form-based code" has become a buzz phrase among municipal planners in Vermont. Many say it's an idea whose time has come.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Many communities talk about creating a healthy environment through wellness initiatives, but this week some Lamoille County towns are both talking the talk and walking the walk. They've invited Mark Fenton, former host of the public television show America's Walking, to conduct downtown "walking audits."

Barre Historical Society is kick starting a wood fired bakery renovation. Wallingford weighs the pros and cons of a Town Hall cell phone antenna proposal. Waterbury plans a municipal complex groundbreaking.

Redjar at the English language Wikipedia [GFDL (www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)] / Wikimedia Commons

The town of Wallingford is considering a proposal to add a cell phone antenna to the historic town hall’s cupola. There are already two antennas in the clock tower, but a proposal to add a third antenna has the attention of the Vermont Department of Historic Preservation.

Pages