approached for help in Rockville revitalization
— It’s only been around for a year, but a small group of residents are
taking their pride and concern for their community and turning it into action,
as part of the Rockville Community Block Watch program.
The block watch was created last year “because there were a lot of concerns
about public safety and gang activity in Rockville, particularly in the Union
Street and Cottage Street areas,” said Oak Street resident Rosemarie
Mezrioui, acting president and social
officer for the RCBW. The group is made up of a basic core of 15 members,
including 7 block captains that attend the monthly meetings. Mezrioui said
there are 20-25 block watch members, in total.
On this night, March 6, the group was visited by Vernon’s new community and
economic development coordinator/ assistant town planner, Marina Rodriguez.
Rodriguez has only been on the job for two months, and one of her first tasks
is to work on a revitalization development plan for Rockville. —
Rodriguez said she is looking for a core group of people to represent
Rockville (i.e., those who live, or do business in Rockville, etc.) to meet
and be the neighborhood group to focus on revitalization. She hopes to create
a plan and profile of the neighborhood.
“A lot has already been done in terms of plans and studies,” Rodriguez
said. “We need to really get a group that can start working on where we go
from here and what’s the next step.”
But some group members wondered if yet another group needed to be formed.
There are too many groups concentrating on the same effort, they said.
“Some groups have the volunteers, some have the proper level of funding,
some have the creative abilities, some have the organization, some have the
physical capabilities, some have the enforcement capabilities. But no one
group has all. What we need to do is to have them come together to fix
Rockville’s problems,” said Bryan Flint, Communications Officer for RCBW.
Attracting good, interactive tenants
who are going to be involved in town government is also important to
Rockville’s revitalization, the members said.
“You want people who are going to live there, shop there, and help the
businesses,” said Officer Charles Hicking, Community Police Officer.
The RCBW also discussed relevant issues including unshoveled sidewalks, which
Officer Hicking said carries a fine of $20 a day, up to a maximum $50, if not
done. Hicking proposes an ordinance change that would place a lien on
properties, if the sidewalks were not cleared and the town had to clear them.
Hicking noted he would need to see if this was something that DPW could
The RCBW meets the first Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m. in Community Room of
Florence Mill Apartments, 121 West Main Street, Rockville. For more
information, visit www.RockvilleCT.com,
and click on the link for the block watch. The Rockville public is invited to
attend. The next meeting is April 3.
speaker. (l-r) Ginger McLean, Florence Mill block captain, Betty Heim of
Florence Mill and Renee Depastino of St. Bernard’s Terrace listen to Marina
Rodriguez talk about working together in the Rockville revitalization effort.
Photo by Jessica Ciparelli.
Rockville Community Block Watch