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Bridgeport gets $22 million from the state to knock down PSEG Harbor Station plant

The decommissioned PSEG plant is located next to the Hartford Healthcare Amphitheatre
Molly Ingram
The decommissioned PSEG plant is located next to the Hartford Healthcare Amphitheatre

The state of Connecticut is giving the City of Bridgeport $22 million to demolish the old PSEG Harbor Station coal-fired power plant.

The coal plant and its red and white striped smokestack can be seen from I-95 and the harbor. It was decommissioned in 2021.

A consulting company will spend the next year surveying the area to determine construction plans.

Some city and state officials say they want the plant replaced with housing and commercial retail — but that could be years away.

Before construction can begin, officials say PSEG has to sell the land, and the soil needs to be cleaned of contaminants.

“Economic development in and around Bridgeport Harbor remains one of my administration’s top priorities,” Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim said. “This CIF funding will not only address a major environmental justice issue in our city, but help prepare Bridgeport’s waterfront for transformational economic development.”

The $22 million for demolition and abatement comes from the Connecticut Community Investment Fund, which voted to spend $100 million on more than 20 projects around Connecticut this week.

Bridgeport got the biggest grant by far.

“For a lot of us the plant has represented sickness, it has represented a lot of badness going on in our neighborhoods, in terms of how it's affected our health, how it's affected noise pollution, how it's affected traffic,” said State Representative Antonio Felipe, who is on the board. “And we're now able to see that come down, hopefully built into something that connects our harbor.”

Molly is a reporter covering Connecticut. She also produces Long Story Short, a podcast exploring public policy issues across Connecticut.