Justice Thomas R. McKeon, has granted 321 Lincoln Street Development, LLC’s, motion to amend their complaint in relation to its proposal to build a 332-unit housing development in Saco being rejected by the Planning Board.

The justice, who sits on the State of Maine Business and Consumer Court, also granted the LLC the right to further probe and investigate the issue of bias on the part of the city of Saco Planning Board Member Robert Biggs.

According to the ruling from Justice McKeon, Biggs failed to disclose his affiliation with Save Saco Neighborhoods, a community Facebook group opposed to 321 Lincoln Street Development’s housing project in Saco.

In May, the city stated that even if he was a member of the Facebook page – which they call a “clearing house for local news, information and causes” aside from Lincoln Village – that wouldn’t be grounds to to allege bias or violation of equal protection and due process.

At that time, Biggs did not respond to a question from the Biddeford Courier asking if he was currently or ever a part of the Save Saco Neighborhoods. In May he was a member of the Facebook group.

The proposed housing development had generated significant community pushback on both the Save Saco Neighborhoods community page and at public hearings.


In December, the applicant behind Lincoln Village, Loni Graiver, sued the city in Maine state court because the Planning Board rejected the housing proposal in its final review, after approving it at an earlier stage. Last week, Graiver told the Courier that the judge “correctly” amended the lawsuit due to the fact that Biggs failed to disclose his involvement with Save Saco Neighborhoods.

“For the first time in Maine based on our research, a planning board reversed their own findings of facts and preliminary approvals and wrongfully voted down this much needed housing development at the final approval stage,” Graiver said.

The Saco Planning Board had initially approved the development’s preliminary site plan and conditional use application in June of 2023, but voted down the final application in October of 2023.

The Board cited no reasons for voting down the application other than public comment from Save Saco Neighborhoods, Graiver said.

“The backroom dealings and underhanded way the city of Saco does business is coming to light,” Graiver said.

According to Graiver, pushback from Save Saco Neighborhoods “intimidated” the Planning Board into voting down the final project last year.


But Saco residents had been concerned about the project from the beginning.

Residents who spoke at public hearings cited concerns ranging from increased traffic to alleging the Planning Board did not follow proper procedure when approving the development’s preliminary application.

A concerned resident who spoke at some of the meetings told the Courier last year that the development “fails to fit in with the surrounding community, exacerbates existing unsafe traffic conditions, does not align with the city’s Comprehensive Plan, and destroys the last tract of forested land in downtown Saco.”

Still, Graiver alleges that members of the Planning Board were forced to vote against the project because of “fear, emotion and intimidation.”

It is unclear what comes next for the Lincoln Street project, but for now, Graiver is calling for Planning Board member Robert Biggs to “step down from the Planning Board and apologize for his wrongful votes.”

Biggs did not respond to the Courier’s requests for comment.

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