Winooski has the unique geographic feature of being a one-mile square block north of the Winooski River. With a population exceeding 7,000, Winooski offers a small town feel yet has easy access to the rest of the Burlington area and all it has to offer.
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Settled in 1722 by Ira Allen (later founder of the University of Vermont), Winooski became an important revolutionary location just north of Burlington. Ira established a dam across the upper falls of the Winooski River and proceeded to build saw mills on the banks of the swiftly flowing river once called the "Onion River". The plan proved effective enough that the American Woolen Company built brick mills on the river. Employment opportunities attracted thousands of workers from the surrounding regions. Because of this inflow, Winooski had a very strong cultural influence.
This inflow of workers, along with the economic vitality the mills provided, evaporated with the closing the woolen mills in 1954. Sadly, the community saw a decline the next 25 years until, in 1981, all three-mill buildings sprang to life again as they were converted into attractive residential condominiums, retail shops, restaurants, and business offices.
In 1999, the city began a public process to engage in a major redevelopment of the city center. Extensive public dialogue resulted in a plan that garnered $38 million in public funding and $169 million in private investment. Construction began in 2004. Two years later, Winooski won a national award for smart growth from the EPA. It has also been recognized as a Preserve America Community from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation.
Featuring 13 Parks, there is every kind -- from small greens to large facilities that have pools, ice rinks, tennis courts and ball fields. No matter where you are in Winooski, just walk a couple of blocks and you’ll find a quiet spot to visit.
City of Winooski
Burlington Free Press - Winooski Section