Thursday, November 30, 2006

Plum Creek

Perhaps you've heard about what Plum Creek, the stockholder-owned real estate and timber company, has planned in Northern Maine. In a landscape that today stands as a largely undeveloped working forest, with pristine lakes and a remarkable wealth of renewable forest resources, Plum Creek has proposed building 975 houses and two large resorts.

By way of comparison, North Conway, New Hampshire has 1,602 housing units in all (2000 Census), and Bar Harbor has 1,558 (2000 Census).

Plum Creek has also tried to sweeten the deal by including a proposed "conservation framework" that would put 368,000 acres under easements or conservation ownership. The possibility for conservation is indeed impressive: the framework would connect a million acres of conserved lands stretching from Baxter State Park to the Canadian border. The only hitch is that the company demands approval of their development plans, then expects state taxpayers and conservation nonprofits to pony up millions of dollars for the framework to take effect.

I'll be writing about this business in greater depth in the weeks to come, until and during the time when the state conducts public hearings on the plan. In the meantime, a few links:

-Natural Resources Council of Maine (who are shaping up as the main opposition group)

-Plum Creek Moosehead Plan site

And this is the big plan: Plum Creek's own documents (these are huge files):

Vol. 1: Petition for rezoning (PDF, 90 mb)

Vol. 2: Plan description (PDF, 165 mb)

Vols. 3 and 4: Appendices (PDF, 110 mb)

The Maine Land Use Regulation Commission (LURC) has a whole web page devoted to the concept plan and its path through the regulatory process here, as well as a calendar of updates and upcoming events.

2 comments:

Paul said...
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Anonymous said...
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