State to weigh options for former Maine Army National Guard Armory

Posted Nov. 15, 2010, at 10:09 p.m.
Last modified Jan. 29, 2011, at 11:49 a.m.

FORT KENT, Maine — State Rep. John Martin, D-Eagle Lake, and University of Maine at Fort Kent Vice President John Murphy are heading a task force charged with recommending possible uses for the former Maine Army National Guard Armory on campus.

UMFK President Wilson G. Hess on Monday announced the appointment of the 10-member task force, which has been charged with accepting and reviewing proposals for the armory’s use and then providing ranked recommendations for planning and implementation in early 2011.

Hess indicated in a press release that many proposals would likely involve only partial use of the facility that could be combined with other uses.

“Preference will be given to proposals that directly support existing university activities, as well as those that have a revenue component associated with them,” the release said. Current expectations are that the best use of the armory will be as a multiuse facility for both the university and Greater Fort Kent.

Notices of Intent to submit a proposal will be accepted until Dec. 1, while final proposals are due by Dec. 17.

The Legislature transferred ownership of the armory from the Maine Army National Guard to UMFK last April.

The Guard vacated the building in 2009 because it no longer was needed for training.

The armory requires between $65,000 and $125,000 in repairs to its roof, walls and floors due to damage incurred as a result of the building sitting unheated for the winter, according to previous reports published in the Bangor Daily News.

The armory is a 17,341-square-foot single-story concrete block building with a brick exterior built in 1962. Another steel-framed building on a concrete slab built in 1989 for storage measures 4,250 square feet. Another small storage building is built with concrete block. The facility sits on a 2.78-acre site bordering the UMFK campus.

Aside from Martin and Murphy, other members of the task force are Patrick O’Neill, superintendent of SAD 27 and a member of the UMFK board of visitors; Glenn Lamarr, TD Bank vice president of commercial lending and a member of UMFK board of visitors; Jesse Jalbert, executive director of Greater Fort Kent Area Chamber of Commerce; Dana Saucier, retired businessman and member of UMFK board of visitors; UMFK faculty members Tony Enerva, Scott Brickman, and Leslie Nichols; and UMFK student Blair Pelletier.

Requests to review the site, for preliminary proposal forms, or for armory plans-documentation may be coordinated through John Murphy at 834-7516 or by e-mail at jdmurphy@maine.edu.

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