The Kennebunk Planning board recently voted final approval for The Mooring, a 12-unit memory care facility to be located on the 14-acre property on York Street that once was the site of a Route 1 rest stop. Courtesy image

KENNEBUNK – The Mooring, a 12-bed memory care facility to be situated on the property that was once the site of a rest area on York Street (Route 1) gained final approval from the Kennebunk Planning Board in February.

The Mooring is designed to serve people living with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other forms of progressive memory loss.

Each of the 12 residential suites opens into a shared living space, open kitchen and dining room, lounge areas and an activity room. A secure garden area is planned with circular trails and gardens.

The proposal was first introduced to the planning board in the fall of 2019. Kennebunk had requested proposals for the 14-acre town-owned in September 2018 and opted to enter a purchase and sales agreement with Beach Glass Management, LLC, for its redevelopment. The company bid $150,000 for the lot. There had been prior projects proposed for the site, but none came to fruition.

The town has owned the land since 1907, according to Maine Department of Environmental Protection documents on file with the board. In 2006-07, a 250-foot-long gravel road and turnaround was created, and the property was used as a snow dump during the winter months; the DEP noted that that was discontinued around 2016.

In November 2021, Beach Glass Management Inc. asked for an extension to submit its final plan because of delays in the DEP permitting process. In November 2022, the board granted a further 90-day extension.


During the process, the location of the facility on the lot was changed due to proximity of vernal pools on the site.

The applicant received approval from the DEP in December. Project engineer Bill Walsh told the board Feb. 13 that the building would be served by public water and sewer and underground electric, and would use road salt only on certain portions of the roadway under icy conditions. Contaminated soil on the site will be covered and capped under a DEP Voluntary Response Action Plan.

The 14-acre property that was once the site of a rest area is poised to become the location of a 12-bed memory care facility following planning board approvals in February. Dan King photo

Slightly under three acres of the 14-acre site would be developed. The memory care facility would be about 9,500 square feet.

Walsh said Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife requested “critter culverts” and a stone wall paralleling Route 1 to keep wildlife from crawling onto the roadway. He said the two-foot high wall’s presence guides the wildlife to a three-foot diameter culvert.

“We worked extensively with (the DEP) which is why it took a while to get through the process,” said Walsh.

Planning board member Richard Smith said he was pleased to see that only organic fertilizer and pesticides would be used but expressed concern over the use of road salt.


“They would only use salt if there is ice,” said Walsh, noting the roadway is otherwise intended to be sanded. Walsh told the board that the roadway is pitched to drain toward the wetlands and to avoid vernal pools.

“Are there artificial things that can be used instead of salt,” asked Smith. “I ask you to take a look at that.”

Walsh said he would talk with the town’s public works director to check out alternatives.

There are currently two other Mooring properties in Maine  – in Cumberland Foreside and at The Downs in Scarborough.

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