LINCOLN, Maine – The Town Council will meet Monday to decide whether to move the town office into a proposed Penquis building on the former Lake Mall site that would cost as much as $6 million, officials said Wednesday.
Penquis will update the council on its plans to mix 24 senior citizen housing units, a Lincoln branch office for Penquis, and a town office — if councilors approve the idea — in an executive session, said Stephen Mooers, Penquis director of housing services.
“We are working toward a total package of three different types of use there,” Mooers said Wednesday. “It all depends on what success we have with the Town Council.”
If all goes well, construction on the proposed 15,000-square-foot building at Main Street and West Broadway would begin in spring 2009 and finish a year later, Penquis officials have said.
As part of the building plan, Penquis will have a conference room space available for area nonprofits and social service clubs or organizations to use within the building, Mooers said.
If Penquis succeeds in building the complex, it will have rehabilitated the last of about eight properties devastated by arson fires in 2002. The fires destroyed eight of 32 Main Street businesses. No one was charged in the arson.
The council voted 6-0 during a special meeting in May to agree to move the town office from 63 Main St. if Penquis develops a lease that the town likes, Chairman Steve Clay said. Councilors have generally agreed that moving the town office from its present location is necessary, but Clay couldn’ t foretell how the council would vote, he said.
“Every time I have to make a guess, it goes the other way,” he said Wednesday.
To help fund the building, Penquis learned last week that it has secured a $395,000 grant sponsored by Machias Savings Bank through the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston, Mooers said. The money will help pay for the elderly housing component of the building.