ROCKPORT — The organizations that had planned for the past 18 months to create an affordable housing project at the former medical office buildings off Route 1 announced Tuesday evening that they will not move forward with the development.

The project proposed by Hope for the Future, LLC, would have converted the former Pen Bay medical offices on Madelyn Lane into 18 affordable apartments. It would also have offered services including transportation and access to health care and food pantries.

The project received approval by the Rockland Planning Board on July 28 and the town’s Zoning Board of Appeals upheld that decision Nov. 29 following an appeal by neighbors who opposed the proposed development.

The following is the text of the letter issued Dec. 13.

“After careful ongoing consideration and 1.5 years of passion and hard work, Knox County Homeless Coalition (KCHC), together with our collaborative partners at Hope for the Future, LLC, have made the very difficult decision to step away from renovating 6-7 Madelyn Lane into affordable housing units.

“We are grateful this experience has allowed us to educate the community, helping people understand the dire need for affordable housing. The primary factor in our decision however — which is out of our control — remains the increasing project costs.

“At the end of the day beyond offering holistic support to individuals, families, and youth who are experiencing homelessness or are housing insecure, it is also our responsibility to be good stewards of every dollar of funding we have — and the current costs put this project out of the realm of good stewardship.

“Since the beginning the vision for this project was the beautiful conversion of existing and empty buildings into urgently needed affordable housing. We had all been hopeful that we would find a way to make it work even as the costs continued to increase.

“The need remains critical.

“We are deeply grateful to our partners at Hope for the Future, LLC, as well as all of our collaborative partners, and the community that rallied behind us in support of this project. We are no less committed to addressing the affordable housing crisis here in the Midcoast. We will continue to focus on our other housing projects including the collaborative work on the Firefly Field development on Talbot Avenue in Rockland. In addition we will continue to identify alternatives that may be accomplished at a more reasonable cost in the future. We look forward to your continued support,” the letter concluded.

The 6.1 acre property has two buildings, built approximately 15 years ago, that are vacant. Pen Bay Family Medicine and Pen Bay Pediatrics occupied the buildings which were leased, but those offices relocated to the new office building on the PBMC campus.

Hope for the Future bought the property in July 2021 for $1.7 million.

There was no information on what would be done with the property. An email was sent to the organization Tuesday night, Dec. 13.