SCARBOROUGH — A controversial proposal for a new public park on Scarborough Beach has received the traffic permit it needs from the state Department of Transportation.

Jay Chace, Scarborough’s Assistant Town Planner, said today that Black Point Resource Management received its traffic movement permit from the state on Nov. 15.

Issuance of the permit is considered a significant step forward in the company’s plan to develop Black Point Park. The 62-acre parcel is owned by the Sprague Corporation.

The developers are still in the process of seeking a site location permit from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection.

Black Point Park is also currently under review by the town’s Planning Board, which is being asked to approve a site plan permit for the development off Black Point Road.

Black Point Park will be able to accomodate 370 vehicles. The beachfront park will have enough space to accomodate up to 900 people at high tide.

The traffic movement permit will require the developers to pay an impact fee of more than $75,000 to the town. Chace said those funds will go toward traffic improvements at Dunstan Corner, Payne Road and at the Oak Hill intersection in Scarborough.

A section of Black Point Road, near the park entrance, will also have to be widened to accomodate vehicles trying to turn left.

Chace said it could take several more months before the DEP permit is approved. He said the Planning Board’s policy has been not to sign off on a project unless it has received all the mandatory state and federal permits.

The Planning Board has held five meetings on the project, including an Oct. 3 site walk at the property, which borders Scarborough Beach State Park.

Chace said the Planning Board has scheduled a final public hearing on the proposal for Jan. 9.

Opponents fear the park will permanently alter the character of what is primarily an upscale, oceanfront neighborhood by generating more traffic and pollution and by harming the habitat of the piping plover and cottontail rabbit.

Staff Writer Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:
[email protected]