Thomaston accepts sale of subdivision lots, road construction
Thomaston — Thomaston voters approved the sale of the Thomaston Green lots and construction of a road into the property at a special town meeting, Tuesday, Sept. 11.
Residents also approved a Community Development Block Grant application for the amount of $250,000 to improve the facade of Thomaston Grocery and remove a guardrail and construct a sidewalk against the edge of the block building. The money also will be allocated for storm water project improvements behind the business block. CDBG are federally funded and administered by the state.
There will be money used for the improvements from the town's tax base to match labor and material purchases, said Town Manager Valmore Blastow. The town public works department will be working on the storm water project behind the business block.
Grants are administered to improve business enterprise in the state — towns compete for funding to improve their downtown districts.
The town also authorized the select board to negotiate the sale of lots 2, 4, 5 and 6 of the Thomaston Green, the former Maine State Prison site. The lots, on Route 1, are for mixed commercial use and are currently being appraised.
Lots 1 and 7 of the Thomaston Green are residential properties. The town voted to authorize the town to sell the lots. Year-long negotiations with construction company Broad Cove Builders of Warren didn't come to fruition with a purchase and sales agreement.
Resident Art Henry voiced opposition to the town selling the Thomaston Green properties. He said the town should "not be in the real estate business" and had warned against involvement before. "They should wait until they get it all ready and then sell them [the properties]," said Henry.
Article 5, to allow construction of a road into the Thomaston Green was also accepted with a bond of $250,000. This article was previously approved at the annual town meeting in June with the stipulation that when a developer purchased the land, the road would be constructed. Although no lots have been sold, the town approved building the infrastructure to add value to the property and increase the desirability of the land.
Courier Publications reporter Juliette Laaka can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 118 or via email at JLaaka@courierpublicationsllc.com.