The Bath Road entrance to Brunswick Landing along Admiral Fitch Avenue. Courtesy of Priority Real Estate Group

BRUNSWICK — Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority is planning more than $2.7 million in infrastructure improvements to the former Brunswick Naval Air Station in the form of a new internal road and a new entrance off Bath Road. 

Town councilors voted Monday to partner with the redevelopment authority to submit joint applications to the Economic Development Administration and the Maine Department of Transportation to hopefully secure funding for the two projects. 

Town Manager John Eldridge said the partnership between the town and the redevelopment authority would likely add more “oomph” to the application.

The Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority is tasked with overseeing the redevelopment of efforts of the former base, now Brunswick Landing, since its decommission in 2011. 

The new internal road, Commerce Drive, will be 1,400 feet long and 24 feet wide with a 1-foot wide shoulder on either side. This $1.2 million project would open up additional acreage for development within Brunswick Landing, according to Steve Levesque, executive director of the redevelopment authority.

The Economic Development Administration would be responsible for the bulk of the cost, with the town and MRRA both paying around $50,000 from the Brunswick Landing tax increment financing district. Tax increment financing or a TIF, is a tool by municipalities to capture tax revenue in certain areas, usually ones that are growing, to fund future development. 


The new entrance between Shaw’s and Fat Boy on Bath Road would extend Katahdin Drive from the intersection of Allagash Drive. This 410-foot road would include one 14-foot lane and two 12-foot lanes for the first 150 feet from Bath Road, according to meeting materials. The remainder of the road would feature two 14-foot lanes. 

The roughly $1.5 million project also features two 5-foot bike lanes, a 5-foot sidewalk and 5-foot esplanade. Because of its position on Bath Road, the entrance will also have street and pedestrian lighting as well as a signaled intersection at Bath Road and Katahdin Drive.

Again, the EDA would fund the majority of this project, with the Maine Department of Transportation picking up the remaining $510,000.

Councilors were also asked to support a third project, a new access to the west side of the property from either Hambleton Avenue or Wilson Ave to Samuel Adams Drive which would allow access to an existing and proposed solar array and the former air traffic control tower without using the perimeter trail popular with bicyclists and pedestrians. It would also mean better access for firefighters and other first responders. The project would cost about $481,000, with $39,600 from the Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority and the remainder from the EDA. 

However, councilors felt the addition was too rushed and did not include enough detail on the impact to the neighborhoods or include input from Bowdoin College, whose land would be bisected by one of the roads. 

Additionally, officials did not state a preference for either option and did not include enough information for councilors to make an informed decision.  They ultimately voted against it.


Eldridge said he was concerned that this smaller project would not stand as well on its own, which is why it was included in the proposal despite being pushed through too quickly, but Levesque said that as the smallest piece of the project, it was the easiest to remove. 

“It’s not that much money,” he said. “If we do something later on down the road we can figure out how to fund it.”

“We love economic development, we just need to make sure we don’t force it where it’s not appropriate,” Councilor Dan Ankeles said. 

The plans come a little over a year after officials opened Landing Drive, a 1,500-foot road linking Admiral Fitch Avenue and Gurnet Road. 

The new access to Brunswick Landing was built partly to alleviate some of the traffic congestion in Cook’s Corner and accommodate continued growth in the area. 

Landing Drive, Commerce Drive and the new Katahdin to Bath Road Extension are all harbingers of more development at the former naval base. 

Levesque said in the fall that despite the pandemic, figures continue to outpace what officials initially predicted. There are now more than 135 private and public businesses and organizations operating at Brunswick Landing and the Topsham Commerce Park, employing over 2,000 people. Hundreds of single-family homes and apartment units are also in the pipeline.

Comments are not available on this story.