Sometimes referred to as the neighborhood of Ridgeway, Mid-City packs a lot of punch into a small geographic area! Within a ½ mile radius, residents have access to shopping centers, restaurants, medical facilities, fitness centers, a wonderful city park and a public golf course. There are also corporate complexes and a hotel to accommodate traveling executives or visiting guests. The housing options include established leafy pocket neighborhoods, gated townhome communities and apartment rental buildings.
Scalzi Park is one of the anchors of Mid-City and is the 3rd largest city park in Stamford. The park was named after John A Scalzi, Jr. a lifelong Stamford resident and a talented athlete in three sports – baseball, football and basketball. Scalzi went on to Georgetown University where he continued his athletic career and became a pro baseball player with the Boston Braves in 1931. His career was shortened by an arm injury but he continued pursuing his life-long love of sports by becoming a top college basketball and football official and later a district scout for the New York Mets. Scalzi Park is comprised of 48 acres and features tennis, basketball and volleyball courts, softball fields, running and hiking trails, a splash pad for children, playground, roller rink, and a bocce ball arena. Cubeta Stadium is also located in Scalzi Park and is home to the Stamford American Legion baseball squad.
Right around the corner from Scalzi Park is one of two Stamford Public Golf Courses, E. Gaynor Brennan Golf. The course was officially called the Hubbard Heights Golf Club from its inception in the ’20s, until 1978. The name was changed that year to E. Gaynor Brennan, in honor of the former official who was instrumental in purchasing the club in ’49. The 70 acre course was originally private but opened for play to Stamford residents on April 1, 1949.
There are quite a few “pocket” neighborhoods in this section of Stamford. One of these neighborhoods is known as Hubbard Heights. Taking a ride down Hubbard Avenue is like a drive through the city’s history. In the early 1900’s downtown was expanding and the population was growing and becoming prosperous. A hospital was built and most of the doctors purchased homes in this nearby neighborhood. In fact, Hubbard Avenue was often referred to as “Doctor’s row”. But the neighborhood goes back even further. Two pillars on Hubbard Avenue report it was settled in 1796. The pillars were erected in 1900 and many large Colonials, Tudor and Ranch style homes were built during this period.
Another Single Family neighborhood in Mid City is the tranquil and bucolic neighborhood of Revonah Woods. The streets are quiet and shaded by lush vegetation and colorful flowers. This might seem a world away from the hustle & bustle of city life, but is actually less than one mile from downtown nightlife and shopping. This little oasis is beloved by residents who feel they live in a hidden gem in the middle of a city. It was originally developed in the 1920’s, far from downtown, but the city grew around it and the neighborhood character remains remarkably untouched. Residents love the feeling of living in the country but are just a short walk away from all amenities. There is a mix of architectural styles from 1920’s Georgian, Federal and Tudor style mansions to ranches and capes built after World War II.
Chesterfield is another neighborhood in Mid-City. A gated condominium community, it was originally a garden-style apartment complex known as Bracewood Lane and it is now comprised of single level and townhome style condominiums. It was developed in the early 1980’s and continues to be one of the most popular complexes in Stamford, offering 2 pool and a clubhouse.
The central hub of these neighborhoods is the bustling Ridgeway Shopping Center. It went through a major renovation in 1999, re-adding a supermarket, more retail stores, pedestrian friendly corridors and a parking garage.
When I grew up Summer Street was a 2 way street with a much more residential feel, though a lot of the Victorians were used as offices back then too. I remember the days when there were two large shopping centers next to each other – Ridgeway which had Sol’s Toy Store, Penn Drug, Sears (with the horsey ride out front) and Ridgeway Theatre; and Town & Country with the Army & Navy store, La Bretagne Restaurant and Fotomat!. I grew up in a garden apartments known as Mayflower Gardens (there’s an office building there now with a big red sculpture in the front), on the corner of Summer & Second St. Back then (yes, a few years ago) Washington Boulevard did not run behind the apartments – it was woods up to the River and my girlfriend and I were the “Queens of the Forest”.
Mid-City offers an unbelievable array of lifestyle choices with recreational and shopping opportunities galore. It’s perfect for those looking to be in a neighborhood with all your amenities close at hand and yet a sense of suburbia. So come take a look at Mid-City, it just might be the right fit for you!