By Carol McCracken (Post # 2,551)
Last night the City Council unanimously approved the purchase and sale agreement to Portland Housing Development Corporation (“PHDC”) for 65 Munjoy Street on the Hill. The lot was formerly part of the parking lot on the site of the former Marada Adams Elementary School. The larger portion of the School property was developed into condominiums a few years ago by Avesta Housing.
The original plan for the property had called for the entire package of property to be developed by Avesta. However, the recession of 2008 made financing the project impossible. So Avesta left off this portion off the development. It has been used by neighbors as off-street parking for years now.
Prior to the construction of the Adams School, the property had been used for industrial sites, including this blogger believes, a lead paint facility. Long known as a Brownfiled, Avesta developers had to undergo extensive remediation to make it habitable. Adams Apple, LLC has to facilitate the same work. The two developers, pictured above right, do not qualify for a $200,000 Brownfields grant from GPCOG. But PHDC does and that’s why it will be the interim owner of the property. After the completion of the work, the ownership of the property will be transferred to Adams Apple LLC.
Current plans call for 8 residential units on the site. Recently there has been some criticism from neighbors about the height and width of the building. No one spoke during the public comment period last night.
Boxer was formerly with Avesta Housing and started his own business Anew Development several years ago. Bass, a Hill resident, who opposed the redevelopment of 58 Fore Street by Jim Brady, has a development company – Random Orbit. The two have joined forces on this project.
Most recently Bass developed the Marquis Lofts at 33 Lafayette Street on the Hill. His architect in both projects is Evan Carroll, Bild Architects.
For newbies in the area, Marada F. Adams taught school for seventy-two years. (That’s not a misprint!) Fifty of those years were in Munjoy Hill schools. Her teaching career began in Lineus, Aroostook County, when she was sixteen hears old. She died at 92 years of age. Adams was an avid supporter of the arts instilling in her students an interest in them. She was a strict disciplinarian as well. One of her students, Donald Liton Ferguson, wrote a self-published book in 1982. “Munjoy Hll Portland’s Scenic Peninsula,” of which the Portland Public Library has a copy.
For more background information, please visit Post # 2,513, dated December 21, 2015 and a post herein dated January 17, 2015.