FAIRFIELD, Conn. – It’s going to take at least a year for the Fairfield rest stop plazas on I-95 to be finished, but when they are drivers will find a new look and new services.
The state is working with a Connecticut company, Project Service, to build and manage the 23 plazas across the state, the two stops in Fairfield at exits 21 and 22 on both sides of I-95 are among the latest to be renovated.
“We saw an opportunity, and the opportunity was that the plazas had not been updated in decades,” Paul Landino, president and chief executive officer of Project Service, said. The renovations will cost roughly $7 million for each stop, he said, but none of it is at the cost of Connecticut taxpayers.
It’s a private-public partnership, and Project Service will be operating the rest stops for the next 35 years.
The plazas won’t be ready until at least fall 2014, Landino said, but all 23 rest stops in the state will be finished by early 2015. There are 11 that are still under construction or are about to be under construction.
“The world at large has changed, peoples time is at a premium and we felt that if we could offer a variety of services that are driver friendly that it would provide and environment where we would do more business,” Landino said. “We also saw potential offerings for good infrastructure, free Wi-Fi modern facility, great restroom facility and a variety of choices.”
Along with the wide range of services including a McDonald's, Subway and Alltown Convenience Store, the plaza will feature classic New England architecture.
“We were unique in our thought process that we wanted to create a really New England feel,” Landino said.
Almost all the companies working on the plazas are Connecticut based, from the architects to the lawyers, and that was something that helped in keeping a unified vision for what the plazas were going to look like and how they were going to function.