R1 Success Story: Homestead Nursing Home, Kittery, Maine
EPA Grant Recipient:
Southern Maine Planning and Development Commission
Residential Housing Units TownPlace Suites Hotel
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Brownfields Success Story: Homestead Nursing Home, Kittery, Maine (pdf)
Route 1 in Kittery, Maine, is an important commercial and transportation corridor and for many is the first entry point into the state from the south. The former Homestead Nursing Home on Route 1, a vacant and blighted structure, was an eyesore and hazard for the community. It attracted trespassing and vandalism.
The 7.4‐acre site developed in 1959 as a senior living facility and nursing home operated until 2001. Since then, the building has been vacant and in poor condition, with broken windows, walls, ceilings, roof damage, and overgrown landscaping. The Town of Kittery had been trying for years to tear down the building and clean up the property.
Priming the Property for Redevelopment
A local developer was interested in working with Kittery officials to find a new use for this site, but concerns about lead paint, asbestos, and underground tanks were a roadblock. The Town organized a meeting between the developer and the Southern Maine Planning and Development Commission to see if they could help. The planning commission agreed that redeveloping the site was an important local and regional priority and agreed to support the project through its Brownfields program.
Once the site was found eligible for the program, work began to identify likely contaminants and then to do sampling to determine the extent of the contamination. In total, the commission provided $32,000 in Brownfields funds to assess the site, giving the developer and Town the information they needed to move ahead. The amount of contamination turned out to be limited and the cost of cleanup within reach for the developer.
"The Homestead project places a significant property along the Town’s busy Route 1 corridor back into active and productive use. The funding provided by EPA and SMPDC to support assessment and cleanup of the site was critical to its redevelopment, which will benefit Town residents, visitors, and taxpayers for years to come."Kendra Amaral,
Kittery, Maine Town Manager
The developer purchased the site and demolished the dilapidated building, completing the site cleanup at the same time. The property was subdivided into two parcels. On one parcel, a residential housing builder plans to construct 32 residential units of senior housing and twelve single‐family homes. The second parcel has been sold for construction of a 112 room TownPlace Suites Marriott hotel. The development also includes a large outdoor recreation area and walking trail and protects a pond and nearby wetlands.
This abandoned former nursing home is a prime example of how the EPA Brownfields program can provide health, environmental, social and economic benefits to a community. The cleanup, removal and reduction of exposure to contamination creates a more sustainable and healthy environment, while spurring positive economic development.
Publishing # 560F 20 006