New Britain officials, led by Republican Mayor Erin Stewart, have embraced the CTfastrak bus rapid transit system as an economic engine, and it seems to be working. The mayor said in a recent interview that she expects 200 new units of downtown housing in place by the end of this year, with another 100 coming next year. Indeed, nearly all of the development in downtown New Britain is within easy walking distance of the downtown CTfastrak station, making it what planners call “transit-oriented development,” or TOD. This spring, Gov. Ned Lamont appointed Lisa Tepper Bates, a former foreign service officer, to the new post of senior coordinator housing and transit-oriented development, and the General Assembly created a Municipal Redevelopment Authority to spur development near transit and town centers of distressed cities.