Commercial real estate pushing Portland’s West Bayside forward

Mainebiz magazine reporter Laurie Schreiber recently wrote a very thorough article about commercial real estate development that is helping to transorm Portland’s West Bayside neighborhood. “A growing number of retail and residential offerings are attracting visitors and prospective residents to the area between Congress Street and Marginal Way,” according to Schreiber.

The article reviews some of many new economic development projects that have been transforming that part of town, including Century Plaza, which Northland has been developing for several years now.

The solid forward momentum is likely continue, as the City of Portland moves forward with its plans to sell seven public works parcel. This property includes land and buildings and totals four acres. The city is in the process of putting these assets on the market, which could lead to further revitalization in the next several years, between Portland, Parris, Alder and Kennebec streets. The city says its goal is to stimulate private sector investment for 24/7 mixed-use development such as small retail or residential.

For the full Mainebiz article, CLICK HERE.

More commercial real estate development has also led to more residential units, like these 55 new apartments on Treble Street. The City has experienced a housing crunch for many years.

More commercial real estate development has also led to more residential units, like these 55 new apartments on Treble Street. The City has experienced a housing crunch for many years.

“Five Guys” finishing Augusta redevelopment

NORTHLAND SIGNS “FIVE GUYS,” COMPLETING IMPORTANT AUGUSTA REVELOPMENT PROJECT

(Augusta, Maine) Northland Enterprises, a commercial real estate development company based in Portland, has announced that the redevelopment of the former Kennebec Journal property on Western Avenue will soon be complete.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries has signed a lease to occupy the last remaining space at the complex. Construction on the space will begin shortly, and it is anticipated that the restaurant will be open for business in the early autumn. A Northland official said the owner of the Augusta restaurant already operates a Five Guys franchise in Portland that has proven to be very popular.

“We turned down several potential tenants for that prime space, because the feedback we got from Augusta community leaders was that they wanted something distinctive there,” said Josh Benthien, a partner at Northland. “Five Guys definitely fits the bill, and I think they’ll do well in that very visible location.”

Benthien published a YouTube video recently commenting on the completion of the Western Avenue redevelopment project. Five Guys Burgers and Fries started in Washington D.C. in 1986, and features hand-formed burgers and fresh-baked buns. The company now has more than 1,000 stores in 47 states and six Canadian provinces. On its web site, the company proclaims that, “there are over 250,000 possible ways to order a burger at Five Guys.”

Northland acquired the former Kennebec Journal property in 2011. Today Journal Square leases space to a Goodwill store, a Men’s Warehouse, a Supercuts, a US Cellular retail store, Starbuck, and the regional headquarters for Bangor Savings Bank. Five Guys Burgers and Fries will occupy 2,425 square feet that were specifically designed for a food user. It is centrally located in the project, between Supercuts and US Cellular. The restaurant will have an outdoor patio, facing Western Avenue.

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Chipotle big step forward in Marginal Way makeover

(Portland, Maine) Chipotle Mexican Grill has opened at 45 Marginal Way, the first new business open to the public in a redeveloped business complex planned by Northland Enterprises of Portland.

Chipotle is a popular chain of fast food restaurants that operates in the U.S., the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany and France. The restaurant will be joined on the property by a T-Mobile retail store, and according to a Northland official, the two will be the anchor tenants at the property, which is now called Century Plaza.

“It’s always exciting to see business come to life in an area that’s being redeveloped,” said Josh Benthien, who along with his business partner Rex Bell is a principal owner of Northland. “Since the closing of Century Tire, the neighbors have been eager to see the area bounce back. It’s been a complex project, but we’ve worked closely together with Portland City Hall, and it’s nice to see that work come to fruition.”

Benthien has released a “report to the community” on YouTube, detailing his company’s redevelopment activities in the area. (LINK: https://youtu.be/ZERTFURDVG8)

Northland purchased the former Century Tire property from Atlantic Bayside Investments in 2015. In addition to the Century Tire site, Northland also acquired 1 Marginal Way, 200 Kennebec Street and 202 Kennebec Street, all of which it plans to redevelop. Century Tire closed in February 2014 after almost 90 years in business at 45 Marginal Way.

Commercial real estate developer makes progress at 45 Marginal Way, Portland, Maine.

Northland Enterprises has been working hard on the rebound happening right now on Marginal Way in Portland, Maine.Josh Benthien issues community update

Portland firm wins national award for enviro clean-up & redevelopment

commercial real estate Sanford Maine

Northland Enterprises won a Phoenix Award, along with the City of Sanford, for excellence in brownfield redevelopment.

(Portland, Maine) The redevelopment of an abandoned mill building in Sanford, Maine won national recognition in September, with a Phoenix Award going to Northland Enterprises of Portland for outstanding execution in cleaning up a former brownfield site and transforming it into a significant community asset.

Standing in for Northland Enterprises in Chicago were Sanford city manager Steve Buck, city planner Jim Gulnac and Jim Nimon, executive director of the Sanford Regional Economic Growth Council. The awards ceremony was part of the National Brownfields Training Conference, sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and attracting government and business leaders throughout the nation. Northland’s work on the Sanford Mill was completed in August of 2013, and redevelopment from the beginning of the project was in close cooperation with city officials. Gulnac paid tribute to the public/private partnership with Northland.

“In the business of brownfield redevelopment, this is like winning the Oscar,” Gulnac said. “Northland’s participation far exceeded their huge financial contribution. They were patient and persistent, considering all the bureaucratic red tape, and they were ‘all in’ from the start of the project. This was a great partnership.”

The redevelopment of Sanford Mill took seven years from start to finish, according to Josh Benthien, a partner at Northland Enterprises. Located at 61 Washington Street, Sanford Mill is a mixed-use development that includes both residential units, as well as office and retail space. It’s part of the Sanford Mill Historic District, and is the nearest mill building to the center of the city’s downtown. Benthien said that of the $12 million invested in the project, nearly $11 million went to Maine-based contractors and companies. Benthien and business partner Rex Bell commented on the Sanford Mill project in a YouTube video published earlier this summer.

Northland Enterprises also contributed $10,000 earlier this year to help with infrastructure and landscaping needs at Gateway Park. The park is an approximately 1-acre parcel that allows citizens to enjoy an overlook and waterfall near Number One Pond and the Mousam River, at the corner of Riverside Avenue and Washington Street.

Northland hires Conor Beliveau

Northland Development hires Conor Beliveau

Conor Beliveau, our new Development Officer, is a great addition to the Northland team!

(Portland, Maine) Conor Beliveau has joined Northland Enterprises as a Development Officer.

Beliveau joins the Northland team having previously worked as the marketing director at a commercial mill property in southern Maine. He is a licensed real estate broker. At Northland, Beliveau will participate deal structuring and underwriting, acquisitions, marketing, and tenant relations.

A Maine native, Beliveau has also worked as a commercial fisherman and an organic farmer. He is an avid athlete and outdoorsman who enjoys telemark skiing, surfing, tennis, ultimate Frisbee and other pursuits.

Great news for Northland clients

(Portland, Maine) Tim Meyer has joined Northland Enterprises as Director of Property Services.

(VIDEO: Northland partners Rex Bell and Josh Benthien welcome Meyer, discuss why having a good property manager is so important.)

Meyer previously spent 12 years at Benchmark Construction in Westbrook as a superintendent. He has also worked with PM Construction in Saco and Ouellette Associates in Brunswick. He currently oversees all subcontractor/vendor assignments at Northland-owned properties, working with company personnel to formulate multi-year plans to achieve energy efficiency and sustainability.

Tim Meyer currently resides in Freeport with Jeanne, his wife and daughter Kelsey and son Willets. He enjoys spending time with his family in the outdoors — kayaking, boating, skiing, and spending time at the beach surfing with his kids.

Use of park signals completion of Sanford Mill project

Public using Gateway Park, symbol of collaboration between developer & city

(Sanford, Maine) Developers Josh Benthien and Rex Bell issued a video news release yesterday, marking official completion of the Sanford Mill redevelopment project.

They also revealed that the downtown redevelopment project enabling the construction of newly-opened Gateway Park is contending for a national award, recognizing the significant environmental clean-up completed at a former industrial mill. (CLICK HERE for link to video press release from Josh Benthien and Rex Bell, partners at Northland Enterprises.)

The redevelopment of Sanford Mill took seven years from start to finish, according Benthien. Located at 61 Washington Street, Sanford Mill is a mixed use development that includes both residential units, as well as office and retail space. It’s part of the Sanford Mill Historic District, and is the nearest mill building to the center of the city’s downtown. Benthien said that of the $12 million invested in the project, nearly $11 million went to Maine-based contractors and companies.

As part of the redevelopment, Northland Enterprises also contributed $10,000 earlier this year to help with infrastructure and landscaping needs at Gateway Park, which the Sanford News recently described as “evidence of a revitalizing downtown Sanford.” The park is an approximately 1-acre parcel that allows citizens to enjoy an overlook and waterfall near Number One Pond and the Mousam River, at the corner of Riverside Avenue and Washington Street.

Bell gave high marks to Sanford’s economic development officials, calling them “innovative” and willing to explore “creative ways to make this project work.”

Northland Enterprises was founded in 2001. It is a commercial real estate development company that believes highest and best use of properties is good for communities, tenants and investors.

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Razor-sharp logic examines development facts vs. emotion

A proposal to build senior housing at a former convent on Stevens Avenue has the Portland Press Herald criticizing the critics. (Photo by Derek Davis, staff photographer @ Portland Press Herald.)

A proposal to build senior housing at a former convent on Stevens Avenue has the Portland Press Herald criticizing the critics. (Photo by Derek Davis, staff photographer @ Portland Press Herald.)

This is our third post in less than six months citing a particularly cogent piece of writing by the chief editorial writer at the Portland Press Herald, Greg Kesich. A couple of weeks ago his piece, “Anti-growth mindset leaves Portland with little to build upon, “cited a couple of compelling facts.

In the last few years, Portland’s population has increased less than 1 percent. In the same timespan, the national population grew at more than 3 percent. “If there is crazy population growth, it’s not happening here,” Kesich wrote.

Particularly in Portland, the tone of anti-development rhetoric is often hysterical and irrational. Kesich is right on it, however, and deftly shreds its inherent pomposity. If you’d like to read his entire column, CLICK HERE.

Bayside re-development continues

Commercial real estate development Portland Maine

Article about the redevelopment of Portland’s Bayside neighborhood. Reported by The Forecaster

By David Harry, The Forecaster, Monday, May 4, 2015 at 2:20 pm

PORTLAND — A developer expects the former Century Tire service center at 45 Marginal Way to be flattened within the next two weeks.

“Our demo guys are ready to roll,” Northland Enterprises principal Josh Benthien said May 1, two days after the announcement his company bought the property and three adjacent parcels on Marginal Way and Kennebec Street.

To read full article in The Forecaster, CLICK THIS LINK.

MAINEBIZ: Developer buys four buildings for Portland’s ‘Century Plaza’ retail project

CLICK ON IMAGE to read the full article by Mainebiz reporter Lori Valigra.

CLICK ON IMAGE to read the full article by Mainebiz reporter Lori Valigra.

(Portland, Maine) Commercial real estate development company Northland Enterprises LLC of Portland said it has bought four properties on Marginal Way and Kennebec Street to make way for a retail mall it has renamed Century Plaza.

Northland bought 45 Marginal Way, a site occupied for 88 years by Century Tire Co. before it closed in February 2014. It also purchased 1 Marginal Way, 200 Kennebec St. and 202 Kennebec St. The total cost to buy the properties and the price to redevelop them will be (CLICK HERE for full MAINEBIZ article.)