Governor Lamont Announces All Highway Rest Areas Will Resume 24/7 Operations Beginning July 1
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont today announced that all seven of the state-operated highway rest area buildings, including indoor restroom facilities, will be open to the public 24 hours a day, 7 days a week beginning Monday, July 1, 2019. Funding to return the rest areas to round-the-clock operations was included in the budget the governor signed into law earlier this week.
“While certainly well intentioned, I believe the move to shut our state’s rest areas was penny wise and pound foolish,” Governor Lamont said. “We have to make the necessary investments to attract people to visit and return to our state. This is a small but meaningful step toward making Connecticut more attractive to visitors and our residents alike.”
The state’s seven rest areas – four on I-84, two on I-91, and one on I-95 – are maintained by the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT). They are part of a statewide network of facilities, which also include 23 service plazas that are located on interstate highways and the Merritt Parkway and offer parking, food, rest and relief, as well as other amenities.
“My agency has always felt that our seven rest areas are important safety amenities for travelers and truckers,” CTDOT Commissioner Joe Giulietti said. “While I’m proud of the fact that we managed to at least keep them open in the face of financial adversity, our residents and visitors to our state deserve better than portable bathrooms. This has been a long time coming, and I thank Governor Lamont for helping to get us the resources we needed.”
Staffing levels at the facilities had been reduced on October 1, 2016 in response to budget cuts, limiting the seven locations to a one-shift, daytime operation. While the rest areas technically remained “open” around the clock under the scenario, the indoor facilities were closed to the public for the remaining two evening and overnight shifts, necessitating the sole use of outdoor portable restroom facilities during hours during un-staffed hours.
The seven rest areas are in the following locations:
- I-84 Danbury EB past Exit 2
- I-84 Southington EB past Exit 28
- I-84 Willington EB past Exit 69
- I-84 Willington WB past Exit 70
- I-91 Wallingford SB past Exit 15
- I-91 Middletown NB past Exit 19
- I-95 North Stonington SB past Exit 93