BRUNSWICK

A connector road linking Admiral Fitch Drive and Gurnet Road is coming closer to reality, with a potential construction date in late winter.

According to Brunswick Economic Development Director Linda Smith, the planning board met with a consulting firm in late October, where the sketch plan was approved for the estimated $1.9 million project.

The numbers on the cost of the project are not firm and could be less, according to Smith and Town Manager John Eldridge.

A final plan application is in progress and will come before the board again for approval, likely in December, Smith said.

The road has been under consideration for years, but construction could start in February or early March.

Stakeholders and abutters have donated land for the construction.

The Brunswick Town Council gave approval Monday for the town to apply for a Maine Department of Transportation grant that will pay one-third of the cost of the project, or up to $1 million.

Funding will be pulled from Tax Increment Financing, the Maine Department of Transportation, and other sources, according to a letter to Anna Breinich, the town’s director of planning and development.

Eldridge said last week the project is estimated to cost between $1.5 million and $2 million, and discussions with MDOT, Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority, and various developers to divvy up the cost is underway.

A connector would take pressure off Bath Road, Smith said, which has been impacted by increased development at Brunswick Landing, retail activity at the Cook’s Shopping Corner Mall and residential growth in the area.

John Adams, a transportation engineer working on the project, told the planning board in October the road is designed to mitigate current traffic volume and to plan for future growth at Brunswick Landing. He said a three-lane road balances today’s needs with the capacity for growth. There also will be a five-foot bike path included in the design. The design of the road is for three 11-foot travel lanes, two going in opposite directions, and a middle turning lane.

The town must acquire easements from property owners to start the work. Jim Howard of Priority Real Estate Group, as well as Chris Rhoades of Brunswick Landing Ventures LLC, have written to the town, agreeing to convey a portion of their properties as a right of way.

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