SCARBOROUGH — Although plans aren’t clear, some type of development is in the offing for the former Beech Ridge Motor Speedway in Scarborough, which closed Sept. 26.

In November, Travis Letellier of Northeast Civil Solutions, Inc., on behalf of developer Scarborough Property, LLC, presented a site inventory before the Scarborough Planning Board — the first step in the process.

During a public hearing, some said they aren’t happy about plans the would turn the racetrack into something else. A woman, whose husband is the grandson of the speedway’s builder and original owner, said she and thousands of others want the property to remain a racetrack.

Letellier told Planning Board members about what was currently located on the 55-acre parcel at 70 Homes Road but didn’t specify what the developers plan to build there. “We haven’t got the master plan so we don’t know what we’re putting in,” he said.

The land contains the track, a gravel parking area, a maintenance yard and a forested area with what Letellier described as a “finger of wetland” located on the south side of the property that includes two vernal pools, one of which is very small.

Neither of the vernal pools are deemed to be significant, he said, so neither the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers nor the Maine Department of Environmental Protection require restrictions for the vernal pools other than keeping development off them.


The racetrack, parking lot and part of the forested area are viable for development, Letellier said. He noted that the wetlands and some portion of the forested area are viable for limited development.

The property has four bathroom/disposal areas with septic systems which will be removed or abandoned, he said.

The soil drains well, Letellier said, which would assist with storm water drainage. Water from the property drains into the Scarborough River watershed, he said.

Ashes of human remains are also buried on the property, Planning Director Jay Chace said.

Investigation of where those remains are, and the state regulations regarding disturbing them is under investigation, Letellier said.

Though plans for what would go on the land weren’t discussed, Denise Hamilton, who lives in one of seven homes on Two Rod Road that abut the property said she didn’t want any new development; she wanted the racetrack to remain and have it and its history preserved.


Hamilton said she spoke for the thousands of members of “Save Beech ridge Speedway.”

Her husband Warren, Hamilton said, is the grandson of the first owner and builder of Beech Ridge Motor Speedway, James. B.McConnell, who immigrated from Nova Scotia to the U.S. at the age of 12 and built the racetrack in 1948-49. The first race on the track, Hamilton said, was on May 20, 1949.

The property has had several owners since McConnell sold it in the 1970s, she said and a community has developed around it.

“Beech Ridge (which was the only NASCAR-sanctioned racetrack in Maine) is the home away from home for many people from May through September,” Hamilton said. “Many of those people met at the track, married, raised their families at the track and even buried their loved ones’ ashes in the infield or spread their ashes around the track.”

She said the track brought tourists and revenue to the town.

Planning Board Chair Rachel Hendrickson said she feels for those who have developed a community around the racetrack, but noted that those purchasing the speedway property do not plan to keep it as a racetrack.

However, she said, “that doesn’t mean the developer can’t recognize the history of the speedway.” She urged developers to put up some type of memorial on that land that would be accessible to the public and “something meaningful to those families who grew up around the speedway.”

In addition, Hendrickson said, the developers need to do more homework on the site inventory and analysis. The property is a brownfield, she said, and what is buried underground, whether hazardous waste or ashes of human remains should be known before moving forward in the process.

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