Rick Lopes

State Senator

Rick Lopes

Deputy Majority Leader

Fighting For You

April 17, 2024

Sen. Lopes Leads Passage of Bill to Protect Parks and Open Spaces

Today, as Senate Chair of the Environment Committee, State Senator Rick Lopes led passage of a proposal to protect municipal parks and open spaces. Senate Bill 294 strengthens existing language that requires when a municipality converts or repurposes park lands, they must provide a comparable replacement.

“This proposal will protect parks and recreation spaces from development, leading to healthier and stronger communities,” said Sen Lopes. “Public spaces are essential to the health and development of all citizens of Connecticut, and protecting access to green space is a great benefit to the quality of life for residents of all ages, especially in urban areas like here in New Britain.”

Current statute has been interpreted to only be applied in instances when a municipality employs eminent domain to acquire the land. Municipalities typically do not use eminent domain to convert parks, so current statute is rarely, if ever, enforced. This bill clarifies the language to include all instances when a park is converted.

The bill passed 31-5 and now heads to the House.

Contact: Garnet McLaughlin | garnet.mclaughlin@cga.ct.gov | 860-304-2319
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