Stories of our connected and rapidly changing region.



Vermont Officials, Businesses Concerned About Decline In Refugees

Bhuwan Sharma, co-owner of Burlington Employment Agency, at his Old North End office. He said his business has plateaued due in large part to Bhutanese-Nepali refugees moving from Vermont to Columbus, Ohio. Photo by Bayla Metzger for VPR

The Burlington area is a hub for refugees and immigrants in Vermont, but area officials and businesses are concerned about this population shrinking. Recent federal restrictions have limited the number of refugees coming to the state and there’s another problem too: some New Americans are choosing to leave Vermont.

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Historic Willimantic, Connecticut To Demolish Rough Reputation

Small businesses including an upscale coffee shop have recently opened on Main Street, intermingling with crumbling buildings. Photo by Cassandra Basler for WSHU

Two grand hotels on historic Main Street of Willimantic, Connecticut, hosted movers and shakers from New York and Boston during the golden age of train travel. The hotels fell into disrepair when travelers took to the highways. Cheap rooms, cheap heroin and social services drew addicts, sex workers and the unemployed. A plan to demolish the buildings may force the town to reconcile its grand history and troubled past.

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