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Posted on: April 10, 2019

Community Development Block Grant

The Town of Orono has been asked to apply for a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) on behalf of a local business. The Byers Manufacturing building located at 74 Mill Street is a 150-year-old manufacturing building in need of attention. It is located within in a residential neighborhood of downtown Orono. The attached photo clearly shows the current condition of the building façade. The town’s Comprehensive Plan adopted in 2015 singled out this property as appropriate for special zoning to enable redevelopment for a new commercial use. CDBG façade grant funds would be used to replace windows and siding on the three sides of the building that are visible from the street. The owner will be investing additionally in a new heating system and energy efficiency improvements as part of this project. The $50,000 grant would provide funding for 50% of the project with the owner providing the other 50%. The CDBG program is funded by the US Housing and Urban Development (HUD) agency and administered locally by the State of Maine’s Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD). The goal for HUD funding is to eliminate slum and blighted conditions in America’s downtowns.
Part of the application process is to receive public comments on the application. A public hearing was held on April 8th at the regular Town Council meeting. We are interested in hearing your thoughts on the proposed project. You are encouraged to leave a comment or if you have questions you can contact Community Development Director David Milan at 207-889-6912 or dmilan@orono.org.

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