hopeful prospect

Prospect, Connecticut

Prospect is a town in New Haven County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 8,707 at the 2000 census.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 14.5 square miles (37.7 km²), of which, 14.3 square miles (37.1 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.6 km²) of it (1.58%) is water. Neighboring towns are Waterbury to the north, Cheshire to the east, Bethany to the south, and Naugatuck to the west.


As of the census of 2000, there were 8,707 people, 3,020 households, and 2,455 families residing in the town. The population density was 608.1 people per square mile (234.8/km²). There were 3,094 housing units at an average density of 216.1/sq mi (83.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 96.31% White, 1.42% African American, 0.09% Native American, 0.72% Asian, 0.72% from other races, and 0.72% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.93% of the population.

There were 3,020 households out of which 36.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 70.9% were married couples living together, 7.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 18.7% were non-families. 15.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.83 and the average family size was 3.16.

In the town the population was spread out with 24.9% under the age of 18, 5.6% from 18 to 24, 30.2% from 25 to 44, 26.1% from 45 to 64, and 13.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 95.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.9 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $67,560, and the median income for a family was $74,038. Males had a median income of $50,796 versus $35,806 for females. The per capita income for the town was $26,827. About 0.9% of families and 1.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 0.8% of those under age 18 and 2.0% of those age 65 or over.

Elected Officials

Mayor Robert (Bob) J. Chatfield (R)
(Since 1978)
Town Clerk M. Carrie Anderson (R)
Town Treasurer David L. Young (R)
Tax Collector Diane M. Lauber (R)
as of 2005 elections

Robert J. Chatfield, the longest serving chief elected official in the state has held the title of mayor in Prospect for 16 terms. Only one elected official has served longer, Sen. George "Doc" Gunther, who is currently serving his 20th and final term.

In 1967, Prospect switched from first selectman to chief administrative officer, and in 1975, began running under the mayoral form of government. Chatfield, a Republican, was elected to that office on Nov. 7, 1977, and became the second mayor of the town, following George Sabo. Since that time, he has been the only mayor many Prospect residents have known.

His most memorable moment in office came when he coined the phrase "The Best Small Town in Connecticut," which has become a favorite among residents. In the late 1990s, Connecticut Magazine named the town one of the worst small towns in the state based on statistics compiled by various agencies. The statement so riled Chatfield, he and several other area chief officials wrote to the magazine supporting Prospect. The day the magazine came out, Chatfield said, he went to a sign company and ordered tags and bumper stickers claiming Prospect as the "Best Small Town in Connecticut." The tags were placed on all town vehicles, and have remained there since.


The town of Prospect is combined with Beacon Falls to create Region 16.
* Algonquin School (Grades K-3)
* Community School (Grades 4-5)
* Long River Middle School (Grades 6-8)
* Woodland Regional High School (Grades 9-12)



  • The 1988 film Galactic Gigolo was filmed in and around Prospect, which was also the setting for the film.

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