Cleanup underway for Riverfront Redevelopment

By Stuart Hedstrom 
Staff Writer
    DOVER-FOXCROFT — In recent weeks passersby have seen the construction vehicles and heard the clanging and banging as crews have been working on the clean-up phase on the Riverfront Redevelopment project at

the former Moosehead Manufacturing site — which will become a mixed use property on the Piscataquis River through Arnold Development of Kansas City, Mo. During a selectmen’s meeting on May 13, town officials met with representatives from Ransom Consulting, Inc. of Portland for an update on the current status of the Riverfront Redevelopment.
    “We are just getting into the lead paint and asbestos mitigation portion,” Town Manager Jack Clukey said, as prep work is needed to be done in order for these hazardous materials to be removed from the site.
    “We have completed a lot of the interior demolition,” said Peter Sherr of Ransom, saying solid, universal and specials wastes have been removed so far. “We needed to take these materials out so we can really get at the lead paint and asbestos.”
    Demolition and abatement work is being carried out by Enviro Advantage, Inc. of Epping, N.H., who like Ransom is being funded through a number of grants that have been awarded for the Riverfront Redevelopment. The abatement work is scheduled to be completed during the summer
    Sherr said the old kiln building has been taken down, as has a portion of the connector building which will be the future site of a patio when the project is finalized. “All of this is being done so we can do the final abatement work,” he said. “The interior building is wide open, it is essentially down to the structural membrane. It is really starting to take shape and be ready when the developer comes in.”
    “One of the things you will start to see now is fencing going up, to secure the site a little more before we start the next activities that really might be a safety concern,” Sherr said.
    “Really we are at the point where we can dovetail the demolition work with the development activities,” he said, such as permanent roofs and windows being put in immediately following demolition. Sherr said some of the project reports are posted on the town website (, but he mentioned more project information could be linked through the site.
    Former selectmen Jim Annis said he was glad a sign for the project has been posted to let the public know about the work being done at the present time. Annis said he had heard a number of comments from people asking about the project status.
    In other business, the selectmen signed the warrants for the annual town meeting referendum and the RSU 68 budget validation referendum. The two ballots will be decided at the polls on Tuesday, June 11, and absentee ballots are currently available. The town meeting articles were approved by voters last month, and RSU 68’s district budget meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 28 at the SeDoMoCha School. Items approved that evening will be placed on the June 11 school ballot.
    At Dover-Foxcroft’s annual town meeting April 27, residents turned down proposed amendments to the Land Use Regulations Ordinance concerning LED signs. Town officials are still looking to form a working group to develop more detailed LED sign regulations than are currently in place.
    Clukey said that Fred Muehl and Cindy Johnson from the planning board have volunteered for the committee, and Select Chair Elwood Edgerly and board member Gail D’Agostino also said they would serve. Clukey said he has heard from several residents who have indicated they might be willing to join the committee, and a list should be ready for the next selectmen’s meeting on Wednesday, May 29 (moved due to the Memorial Day holiday and the RSU 68 budget meeting).
    The selectmen approved a contract for a Healthy Maine Streets agreement between the town and the Piscataquis Regional YMCA. Clukey said the community received a Healthy Maine Streets grant from the Maine Downtown Center as part of the downtown revitalization initiative. The program has three goals, nutrition, exercise and smoking cessation, and the downtown steering committee believes the PRYMCA would be a very effective partner in bringing Healthy Maine Streets to downtown establishments.
    Clukey provided updates on several other initiatives in his town manager’s report. “We are officially a Tree City USA Community,” he said, earning the distinction through programs such as Project Canopy and in relation to Arbor Day. Clukey said Dover-Foxcroft would be receiving signs and a plaque for the Tree City USA Community designation, and will be recognized at the Maine Arbor Week Celebration on May 20.
    Planting has begun at the Vaugh Street River Walk, and Clukey said this work should be done shortly. He also said the next meeting of the recreation committee, scheduled for Wednesday, June 5, will include discussion on the next steps for the recreation space, such as signs and future activities.
    “I would like to recognize the volunteers who are working on our town gardens,” he said, mentioning Pat Jones, Dorothy Hadler, Janet Yelch Weatherbee and Karen Maas, and others, have been beautifying areas by the municipal building and the Union Square island.
    Anyone wanting to help clean up the town can take part in the “Shiretown Shineup” on Friday, May 17, as the downtown steering committee is holding a volunteer clean-up day. The rain date will be May 18 or May 24. Another volunteer clean-up day will be at the town beach on Sebec Lake on Saturday, June 8 from 9 a.m. to noon.
    Clukey said a Charleston Correctional restitution crew replaced the roof of the office building at the airport, with the materials provided by the Piscataquis Pilots Association. The work was done to ready the building for the Piscataquis Heritage Balloon Festival at the end of the month.

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