Bath council approves downtown TIF amendment for hotel

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BATH — The City Council on Wednesday unanimously approved an amendment to the city’s downtown tax increment financing district, an expansion that will encompass the future Hampton Inn hotel.

The 55,000-square-foot Hilton-chain hotel is being constructed on the Prawer Block, bounded by Front, Commercial and Summer streets.

The amendment will add 2.4 acres to the existing district and is intended to capture new private-sector investment from the 86-room hotel, which is expected to create about $7 million of additional assessed value in the district, according to a city summary of the TIF’s amendments and revisions.

According to that summary, new captured assessed value in the amended district is estimated at $3.4 million over the district’s 30-year life.

Money from the TIF will be used to fund the $425,000 construction of sidewalks around the hotel on Commercial and Front streets. The council on Wednesday unanimously gave second and final approval to the bonding of up to that amount of money to pay for the sidewalks until the TIF has repaid those funds.

The city is expected to contract with either the hotel developer, Peter Anastos, or Opechee Construction Corp., the hotel’s general contractor, for construction of the sidewalks. The council plans to make that decision at its meeting on Wednesday, July 1.

“It seemed most efficient to have the site contractor who’s building the hotel do both the design and the build of the sidewalk, because we don’t want to go in and tromp around on a project that they’ve got half done, or totally done,” City Planner Jim Upham said.

The sidewalk project will also include street lighting, Upham said.

Anastos’ proposal to build the hotel received city approval last November. He has said he would like to open the hotel next year.

Alex Lear can be reached at 373-9060 ext. 113 or

A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.