Rockefeller’s Loop

A reader asked about the listings for 20 and 47 Alpine Road, $4.350 and $8.995 million, respectively. Both are pretty impressive homes on a good street (though Merritt noise can be an issue coming across the pond 47 fronts), but when I pulled up the satellite photo of the street to check its proximity (close) to the Merritt, I saw this image and  was reminded of the history of the highway, or the history according to local lore.

According to the story, when the Merritt was originally laid out, it was planned to follow a path that ran right through several of the Rockefeller’s properties and developments which, of course, would never do. Calls were made to at the appropriate friends in Hartford, and voila! The loop you see below. That sharp turn north is said to have claimed a lot of lives over the decades since the road was built, but hey, Khakum Wood was spared the indignity of seeing Buick roadsters hurtling past the kitchen windows of the elite.

There’s also the story, found in the oral history of the Merritt recorded by Greenwich Library, that the Merritt’s route was changed at least three times before construction actually began. A route would be decided on and secretly passed on to select politicians and their allies who, in turn, would rush out and buy the land from unsuspecting farmers, then sold to the state at an inflated price. Then the route would be changed, and the same scam could be worked again. After this was repeated three or four times, word got out and our friends in Hartford were finally forced to settle on a route and stick to it.

Except in the case of Rockefeller’s Loop (in view of a couple of myopic readers who have complained that they can’t see the curve, I’ve substituted a different illustration. If they still can’t see it, well, … tough)





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27 responses to “Rockefeller’s Loop

  1. Cos Cobber

    Another colorful and sad Corrupticut story from yesteryear.

  2. Anonymous

    Is it true that rockwood lane was once the Rockefeller horse racing track?

  3. Anonymous

    i do not see a loop on this map. nor do i see a sharp turn north. what are you talking about?

    • I’m so sorry. Would you like the name of a good optometrist?

      • Walt

        Dude –
        I am not trying to be difficult. And I know where this loop is from driving it all too often. But I don’t see it on this map either. Is it one of those hidden image photo’s, like this one?

        What do you see when you look at that image? A duck, a rabbit, or Jap school girl porn?

        Your Pal,

        • housecat

          I see dead people.

        • Expand the picture, if you must, and look for a yellow line demarking the Merritt turning straight north towards Banksville, then curving southeast to resume its original position.

        • Walt

          Dude –

          After staring at the new enhanced map, like a retard, with dilated pupils, now I see it. I think. Is that a Jap all girls High School off to the right?

          Anyhows, what do you see when you stare at this picture?

          A) Gideon getting beaten up in High School for wearing a bow tie and ascot to gym class, or
          B) What you saw the first time you popped acid; or
          C) Japanese school girl porn?

          Your Pal,

        • Walt

          Dude –

          Here is a really good one. What do you see in this image?

          A) A bunch of performance retards pretending to be dead; or
          B) Francis on a date; or
          C) Anal bleaching gone terribly wrong.

          Your Pal,

      • Walt

        Dude –

        This stuff is FREAKING ME OUT!!

        Look at this picture. And concentrate on the 4 dots in the middle for 30 seconds. Now look at a blank wall and blink repeatedly at a fast pace. What do you see?

        A) A retard punching a puppy, or
        B) The GAR Evil Princess; or
        C) Japanese school girls anal bleaching

        How freaky is that? Not if you saw C!! If you saw A or B, of course you have severe emotional problems.

        You pervert.
        Your Pal,

      • No, I’d like you to not be a dick head and describe where there is a loop

    • Libertarian Advocate

      Bottom left hand corner of the image between the first two route “15” legend icons there is a sharp turn north that then rolls back over into a lazy north north-easterly loop up and over Khakum Lake roughly between the Lake Ave exit and the North Street exit where the road turns sharply southeast before leveling back out as it heads toward Exit 33 in Stamford. See it now?

      • no i don’t see a loop! A loop is like a circle. It loops. like an O. I do not see any O’s and I checked google maps. But thanks for trying Mr. Libertarian. I did see Jesus however above. super cool. Thanks Mr. Walt

      • Anonymous

        so are you saying it doesn’t go in a straight line from about bowman drive to the Burning tree country club and that curve is a loop? I wouldn’t call that a loop but whatever.

  4. Riverside Dog Walker

    I thought you were admirably restraining yourself from commenting on the puff piece in GT on your BFF Cindy Rinfret, but I see it is no longer a highlighted story, so possibly you missed it. I mean, who can argue with gold wallpaper to match your golden retriever in one’s bathroom?

    • Anthony Fountain

      That’s nothing. Our grandmother (the one in pictures, of course) had the leather upholstery in her Rolls dyed to match the color of our late mother’s bassinet. Or so Granny told us–she told marvelous stories about Hollywood, many of which were true.

    • You know, I’m sure, that the Golden retrieve has been bred to be the perfect Nantucket Dog, almost an exact match for the “Nantucket Woman”, blond, good looking and dumb as a rock. In fact, the retriever is better than the Nantucket Woman in many respects: it’s loyal, for one, and doesn’t take you house and half your house from you when it decides to leave.

  5. Same kind of “redirection” in the Northern State to avoid the Vanderbilt/Whitney estates in Old Westbury. Even Robert Moses had to cave.

    • anon

      Rockefeller had no effect on those fighting the 684 swath. It went through the middle of some pricey pads.

  6. 20 and 47 alpine road are ugly. 20 has potential – but needs gutting. Priced too high. 47 is just ugly – awful architecture. Very cold spaces inside and the exterior isn’t pretty. Sad because it is a fantastic setting.

    • The concept’s been around at least since I was a wee lad (and probably long before that), but I don’t remember any support from the idea from CT residents, including myself. Who, besides the Hamptons set, wants to go to Ling Island, and who, including the Hamptons set, wants Long Islanders to come here?
      Route them through Albany, is my thought.