By Carol McCracken (Post # 777)
The opening date for the new Hampton Inn has been delayed until July said a source close to the situation this afternoon. Originally scheduled to open the first of June, the date has changed due to delays by suppliers. The Sebago Brewing Company restaurant remains on track to open over the Memorial Day weekend with the condominium units to open this August.
Built on the site formerly occupied by the abandoned Jordan Meat packing factory, just over a year ago, on May 6, a three alarm, accidental fire swept through the former Jordan Meat Factory, slightly throwing off the construction of the Hampton Inn. That delay was not part of this current delay.
This high-profile company was purchased in 1997 by George N. Gillett, Jr., then by Iowa Beef Processors in 1998. Tyson Foods acquired IBP in 2001 and closed the facility on February 1, 2005. There were 285 employees at the plant and distribution center when Tysons closed it. At the time, John Lea, Tyson’s vice president of consumer products said: “We have evaluated every possible economic scenario for this facility and because of its age, layout, proximity to raw materials and downtown location, it simply does not make sense for us to reinvest in it.” Following the closure, the production work was transferred to New York, Iowa, Oklahoma and Wisconsin.
Then in 2005, a development company from Rhode Island paid $6 million for the property. It planned to build a Westin Hotel and 97 luxury condos on the site, but it never happened. Mark Woglom and Greg Kirsch of Opechee Construction Corp. stepped in and bought the property with no firm plans for the 1.74 acre property – possiblly for around $4.75 million – the then asking price. It was purchased as an investment property at the time.
Last year, on April 13th, the city’s planning board approved the transformation of the former Jordan’s meat company into a new Hampton Inn. The matter was on the fast track because Mark Woglom, president of Opechee Construction Corporation, N.H., wanted to accommodate the new Sebago Brewing Co.’s need to move into the new location by Memorial Day weekend. Woglam also assured Markos Miller that one of the original signs from Jordan’s would be salvaged. Miller later announced that the sign would be placed in the new Sebago Brewing Co. pub on the premises.
For more information on the massive fire, please visit Posts # 458, 5/6 and # 459, 5/7. Please also read post dated April 14th for more general information.