UPDATE: commercial real estate, Portland, Maine

We are in front of the Planning Board tomorrow night, September 20th, a key milestone. We’ve worked with the City of Portland for three years now on the redevelopment of the old Elks building on outer Congress Street. This key gateway to the city — right outside the airport — will host new businesses, generate new tax revenue and help Portland make a good first impression on visitors. It will also keep many jobs here that would otherwise move outside the city. The planning process is almost finished, and construction should start in early 2017. In this video, Josh Benthien updates the taxpayers of Portland.

“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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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.

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.

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.)

AUGUSTA: Developer hopes for “quality restaurant”

Commercial real estate developer in Augusta, Maine hoping to lure restaurant to Journal Square

Northland Enterprises is hoping to lure a nice restaurant to Journal Square on Western Avenue.

(Augusta, Maine) Northland Enterprises, a commercial real estate development company based in Portland, reported today that although redevelopment of the former Kennebec Journal site is almost finished, the firm is hoping it can lure a locally-owned restaurant to the prime Western Avenue location, now called Journal Square.

“We’ve already turned down a national fast-food chain that wanted to grab the spot, because we heard folks would like to see a good dining option,” said Rex Bell, a founder and partner at Northland. “We’re holding out a little longer for a great restaurant concept because of feedback from the Augusta community. Maybe there’s a Maine chef out there who’s ready to make a splash.”

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, and the regional headquarters for Bangor Savings Bank. Construction is now under way for a stand-alone Starbucks, which is expected to open this summer. Northland said the space, at 2,425 square feet, was specifically designed for a food user, and is the only lease opportunity remaining. It is centrally located in the project, between Supercuts and US Cellular. It has an outdoor patio, facing Western Avenue. Bell said anyone interested in leasing it should contact Conor Beliveau, via e-mail, at conor@northlandus.com, or Joe Porta of CBRE the Boulos Company at jporta@boulos.com.

Northland Enterprises has been managing and re-developing commercial real estate since 2001, in Maine communities and several others in the northeast Unites States. It is based in Portland, Maine. For more information visit www.NorthlandUS.com.

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City park fund gets major boost from developer

U.S. Senator Angus King celebrates the successful completion of the Sanford Mill project with Northland principals Josh Benthien, left, and Rex Bell.

U.S. Senator Angus King celebrates the successful completion of the Sanford Mill project with Northland principals Josh Benthien, left, and Rex Bell.

Sanford recognizes importance of downtown amenities

MEDIA CONTACT: Lee Burnett, grant writer, City of Sanford lburnett@sanfordmaine.org, 207-206-2106 (mobile)

SANFORD – The City of Sanford has received $10,000 from Northland Enterprises of Portland to assist the city with infrastructure and landscaping needs at a new city park.

“Gateway Park” will be an approximately 1-acre parcel that will allow citizens to enjoy an overlook and waterfall near Number One Pond and the Mousam River, at the corner of Riverside Avenue and Washington Street.

The city now has $20,000 in hand and needs to raise another $30,000 to complete work on the park, according to Lee Burnett, the city’s grant writer. Burnett is optimistic that the balance of required funding can be raised by the spring or summer of 2015.

The privately-funded park amenities supplement the city’s contributions, which include acquiring two properties, demolishing two buildings and investing in the park’s infrastructure.

Northland (www.NorthlandUS.com) proposed the donation to Sanford as part of the $12 million renovation of the Sanford Mill (www.SanfordMill.com), a mixed use development that includes both residential units, as well as office and retail space. Northland and the city completed environmental clean-up at the former textile mill in 2009, followed by construction that finished in June of 2013. The project was ready for occupancy in the summer of 2013. Burnett said Northland’s financial commitment to Gateway Park “made a big difference” in Sanford’s ability to secure a federal Community Development Block Grant from the Maine Office of Community Development.

“We’re really appreciate Northland’s support this community project,” Burnett said. “When we finish raising the balance of the money, we can begin working on the landscaping, planters, walkways, lighting and perhaps even a stage area for performances. I think the park is going to contribute very significantly to quality of life in downtown Sanford, and increase overall vitality in the heart of town.”

Burnett said “Gateway Park” could be a temporary placeholder, and that naming rights are still available. He encouraged anyone who would like to help the city reach its $50,000 fundraising goal to contact him by e-mail at lburnett@sanfordmaine.org, or by phone at 207-608-4171. Donations are tax-deductible.

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Adding to the tax base in Portland, Maine

Commercial real estate development in Portland, Maine.

Portland is buzzing about the construction jobs, increased taxable value and new retail opportunities that this project will bring.

Northland Enterprises has been receiving very favorable feedback after WCSH-TV and the Bangor Daily News reported that the company will be re-developing a vacant building, the former Century Tire building, into Class A retail space. Located on Marginal Way in Portland, the building is well-known because it was home to Century Tire for 88 years.

“We anticipate submitting our plans to the City of Portland in late January or early February,” said Josh Benthien, a partner at Northland Development. “We’re looking forward to working with City staff to make it a great project, and we’ll be releasing a lot of information to the general public along the way so that they understand the process. People are very excited that something positive is happening in that part of Portland, so if anything, we will over-communicate about the process.”

Benthien said folks are curious about the price tag of the project, possible tenants in addition to those that have already been announced, the taxable value of the project, and the number of construction jobs that the development will generate. He said Northland hopes to release as much information as possible by the end of January, on the company’s web site and social media channels, and to the media.

Previous work in Portland by Northland Enterprises includes the spectacular renovation of Baxter Library as new office space for The VIA Agency, photos of which are available in a gallery by clicking “THE LIBRARY” at THIS LINK.

Retail space is still available at the 45 Marginal Way location, and Northland Enterprises has assigned CBRE The Boulos Co. as the leasing agent. If you are a prospective tenant, you may find more information about the project at THIS LINK.

CLICK HERE for story, WCSH-TV
CLICK HERE for story, Bangor Daily News

commercial real estate development portland maine

CLICK IMAGE and then click on “The Library” for photo gallery of signature development project in Portland, Maine by Northland Enterprises.

The lighter side of commercial real estate development in Portland, ME

Greg Kesich is the editorial writer at the Portland Press Herald

Greg Kesich made us laugh with a recent column he wrote for the Portland Press Herald.

Usually commercial real estate is a pretty straightforward business, but sometimes we do get a good chuckle along the way. Like when we read this recent column by columnist Greg Kesich at the Portland Press Herald.

As developers of some of the finest commercial real estate projects in Maine and beyond, Northland Enterprises brings an extraordinarily high level of professionalism and competence to all our work, from concept and design all the way through to execution and completion. Representative projects include the redevelopment of the Baxter Library in Portland, our Sanford Mill restoration, and the re-purposing of the former Kennebec Journal building in Augusta. In each and every case, part of the job is attending many meetings; meeting of select boards, planning boards, city councils, town councils, zoning boards and public hearings. That’s why this Kesich’s column caught our eye. With tongue firmly in cheek, he very effectively captured the many hurdles that confront even the most routine and straightforward commercial real estate project.

He was only writing about Portland, Maine, but the phenomenon to which he refers is what we encounter in municipalities all across the Northeast. And while we think he made an humorous point, Northland actually values the governmental and regulatory processes into which we enter every time we build a project and contribute to economic development. Almost without exception, the process of oversight and review helps us build better projects — which is good for everyone.