New wall exhibit on Norwich Harbor at City Hall

I often tell various city officials that they need more “wall stuff” in their offices or in the hallways of City Hall.

It’s a magnificent building, with high ceilings that, of course, mean big walls of white blank space. The new Lincoln portrait and the giant portrait of Judge Park across from it help decorate the halls at the former main entrance to City Hall.

Most people now come in through the Broadway lower level entrance. They make their way to the elevator across from the assessor’s office.

Now, that formerly blank wall features a new exhibit titled “Norwich Harbor on the Thames River,” a scaled down version of the permanent outdoor exhibit soon to be erected at the Howard T. Brown Memorial Park and the Marina at American Wharf. The exhibit was funded through the state Long Island Sound Study program.

One panel shows “Historic Norwich Waterfront,” a view looking north from the river into the harbor. There’s a steam-powered tall ship heading southward, a side-wheel paddle steamer sitting in the harbor, more ships along the banks, which are lined with brick warehouses and waterfront businesses. There’s a train on the west bank tracks.

An aerial view of the harbor looks south from the marina area. Another panel shows “Fish of the Harbor,” with illustrations of six common fish species – striped bass, bluefish, American shad, white perch, American eel and alewife.

More panels outline the Norwich Harbor Management Commission’s “Waterfront Vision” with aerial photos accompanying a listing of the 11 goals to be spelled out in a new Harbor Management Plan now being written, starting with “Comprehensive Mixed-Use Redevelopment of Underutilized Waterfront Sites.”

So next time you’re at City Hall, check out the new harbor exhibit outside the assessor’s office. Then take a walk to Brown Park to view the real thing.

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