I am writing as a concerned resident of Sawyer Street in relation to the Martin’s Point proposal for the Hamlin School property. I purchased my home this fall. I purchased my home based on location, proximity to green space, the slow-paced community feel, and the fact that it was located near only Residential A zoning (there were no large commercial buildings close by).
Martin’s Point’s proposal for the Hamlin School property includes putting in a 15,000-square-foot building where there is now a 9,000-square-foot building, paving over the existing community gardens, and putting in an 85-car parking lot (the proposed entrance for the parking lot being directly across the street from my house).
My concerns include loss of green space, increased traffic (doctors schedule clients at 15 minute intervals), runoff (both into Trout Brook and my basement), lowering property value of the area, light pollution, rezoning and potential further industrialization of the area, and a general shift from the current slow-paced neighborhood feel to one with commercial buildings and commercial traffic.
As a neighborhood we welcome businesses that are in keeping with our residential feel. There are many more appropriate locations within South Portland for Martin’s Point to expand, without having to eradicate a neighborhood center. This would be more in keeping both with the city and Martin’s Point’s values. I hope that South Portland takes a longer view when making decisions about how and where we “develop” and follows a comprehensive plan that keeps residential areas residential.