Camden’s interim Economic Development Director Mathew Eddy said Dec. 10 that the town’s Community and Economic Development Advisory Committee was working on two related projects.

Gateway funds provide snapshot of business activity

Using Department of Transportation funds distributed through the Gateway 1 process, CEDAC is conducting an inventory of businesses and spaces in the downtown area. The inventory, which will be available as an Excel document, will provide up-to-date information about the uses of various buildings, as well as data on motorized and pedestrian traffic.

“It will allow us to do a more effective analysis of parking demand and pedestrian movement,” Eddy said.

“The final thing it’s going to do is take a look at some build-out scenarios, such as what the Knox Mill might look like if fully occupied,” he said. “It’s designed to be a simple, hands-on program that will provide us with interesting information that CEDAC can use.”

Eddy said the committee planned to hold a public meeting Jan. 10, at a location to be determined, where they will release the study to the public.

CEDAC’s next meeting is scheduled to take place at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 20 at the Washington Street Conference Room. At that meeting, the committee is expected to put the finishing touches on its strategic plan, which Eddy said should be completed and available to the public on Jan. 24.

Strategic plan to guide development

The strategic plan is CEDAC’s prioritized plan for Camden’s economic development and is being designed to serve as a priority list for the town’s new economic development director, expected to be hired early next year.

Eddy said the plan would identify individual projects and set benchmarks for their completion. It would also identify the lead person or department for each project.

According to the Strategic Economic Development Action Plan that CEDAC released in early December, the “purpose of [the] planning process was to establish an action plan around which the community agreed, by consensus, the highest priority projects and established a plan to implement them.”

The process was divided into four phases. The first phase included a series of three public meetings, the creation of a mission statement, and development of an action plan organized by projects and priority.

The second phase involved coordinating the action plan with the Gateway 1 study in regard to business activity, build-out scenarios, and alternative parking and pedestrian plans, as well as developing inventories of places, organizations, and events.

In the third phase, a final report and the development of a job description for the economic development director were created.

Presentation of the final report at a public meeting comprises the final phase of the process.

For more information about CEDAC’s activities and Camden’s economic development plans, contact Mathew Eddy at 236-5535.

The Herald Gazette Reporter Shlomit Auciello can be reached at 207-236-8511 or by e-mail at sauciello@villagesoup.com.