February 2, 2012

Spragues scrap controversial Scarborough project

The plan for a new park to expand access to Scarborough Beach had gotten too costly, the family says.

By Dennis Hoey dhoey@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

Baidarka said she doesn't fault the Spragues for trying to do something with their land, but the park would have permanently altered the character of the neighborhood by adding people and cars. The developer said the beach has space for about 900 people at high tide.

Baidarka said she would not be opposed if the Sprague Corp. built homes on the land.

But Sprague said that, for now, the land behind the beach will continue to be farmed.

"We're not real estate developers. We just thought we had found a use for that property that fit with our mission and with the town's goals," Sprague said.

Sprague said his great-grandfather Phineas W. Sprague came to Maine in the late 1800s, fell in love with the area and started buying farms along the ocean in Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough to protect the land from being overdeveloped.

He said his grandfather Phineas Shaw Sprague created Crescent Beach State Park in Cape Elizabeth. "He introduced the notion of creating public access to the water as an important thing to pursue," Sprague said.

"I just feel bad that we weren't able to follow through," he said. "I think this park would have been a good thing for Scarborough and for Greater Portland."

Staff Writer Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

dhoey@pressherald.com

 

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