The most visible difference in the new plan, available at www.plumcreekplanmaine.com, is that several housing development areas have been moved from the more remote stretches of Moosehead and Brassua Lakes to areas closer to the towns of Rockwood and Greenville. At the same time, though, the new plan seeks a good deal more land to be rezoned for development, as well as a large increase (500 to 800) in the number of accommodations and condos at a resort proposed near Big Moose Mountain.
Predictably, Plum Creek is crowing that "the revisions would reduce shoreline development on Moosehead Lake and nearby ponds and lakes by 40 percent" (Mike Muzzy, senior manager for Plum Creek), while critics complain that "the plan would double the amount of land on which the project would be developed, from about 10,000 acres to more than 20,000" (Jym St. Pierre of RESTORE: The North Woods). Between these extreme perspectives lies the truth: the new revision doesn't really accomplish much of anything - and it almost certainly won't change anyone's mind about Plum Creek.
A local citizens' group, the Moosehead Futures Committee, has come up with a homegrown set of reasonable recommendations for growth in the area. The group represents diverse interests in the Moosehead region, and has crafted a plan that accommodates substantial new development without raising hackles in the environmental community.
Had Plum Creek adopted their proposal in the first place, their resorts would have been ready to open this summer. Instead, I suspect that the only ones building new houses are Plum Creek's planning consultants, who have secured a long and lucrative tenure through this whole process.
News reports of the new plan:
Plum Creek Revises Moosehead Plan, Bangor Daily News
Critics Not Swayed by New Plum Creek Plan, Portland Press Herald