DEP tentatively OKs permit for Brunswick train layover facility

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BRUNSWICK — The Maine Department of Environmental Protection has issued a draft approval of a storm-water license for the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority’s proposed Amtrak layover facility.

“Based on the proposed project design and the Department’s review … (DEP) finds that the proposed project will not adversely affect groundwater quantity or quality,” the DEP said in a June 3 memorandum. “Therefore, the Department approves the application of (NNEPRA) to build a storm-water management system.”

The draft contains several conditions of approval, including a revised spill contingency plan, a dewatering plan, and retaining a third-party inspector.

NNEPRA wants to build the layover facility so it can keep Amtrak Downeaster trains overnight in Brunswick. Its plan is opposed by nearby residents, led by the Brunswick West Neighborhood Coalition, who claim the facility will increase air and groundwater pollution.

DEP approval of the storm-water permit is the final hurdle before NNEPRA can begin construction.

Comments on the draft will be accepted until Wednesday, June 10, and the final license decision will be issued by June 17, the DEP said. Comments may be emailed to

Walter Wuthmann can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 100 or Follow Walter on Twitter: @wwuthmann.

Brunswick/Harpswell reporter for The Forecaster. Bowdoin College grad, San Francisco Bay Area native. Follow for municipal, school, community, and environmental news from the Midcoast.