Public works Director Raz Alexe is the recipient of this year’s Preservation Award from the Greater Litchfield Preservation Trust.

The award was presented during GLPT’s annual meeting Monday at Litchfield Historical Society and recognizes Alexe for leading the effort to build three parking areas along Whites Woods Road for those using trails in White Memorial.

“Through the work of (Alexe), an unsightly and dangerous situation has been resolved for good,” GLPT member Victoria Sansing said in presenting the award. “We had a real public safety issue that had to be taken care of.”

Alexe secured a $399,000 Community Connectivity Grant from the state Department of Transportation to build the three parking areas boasting a total of 72 parking spaces.

Before the parking areas were built in 2022, vehicles had to park close to the road. It was a mess, particularly near the trail leading to the boardwalk around Little Pond.

Alexe, in remarks after receiving the award, thanked White Memorial Foundation Executive Director and Superintendent Lukas Hyder for his cooperation on the project. Two of the parking areas were built on White Memorial land.

Monsignor Robert F. Tucker, former pastor of St. Anthony of Padua Church, also was supportive, Alexe noted. Tucker agreed to Alexe’s request to use a piece of the land the church owns to the west of St. Anthony Cemetery for the third parking area.

“Everyone cooperated and worked together to make it happen,” Alexe said. “I’m very honored and humbled to receive this prestigious award.”

Photo and text by John McKenna, Republican-American

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