South Portland marina to expand shop, 'gas house'

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SOUTH PORTLAND — The owner of Sunset Marina near Ferry Village plans to expand a “gas house” to nearly six times its current size.

The gas house, which sits on the dock, currently holds a small marina store, controls for land-side gasoline and diesel pumps, a fire alarm system and the circuit breakers for the dock.

The expansion from 108 square feet to 625 square feet will provide more room to suit those purposes, according to an engineer who spoke for the marina owner at a Planning Board meeting Tuesday.

The project is expected to cost about $26,000. The Planning Board had questioned the owner, Daniel Lilley’s, ability to pay, but was satisfied by a letter from his attorney indicating he had enough cash to fund the job.

“The existing building is rather small,” said Randy Pike of TEC Associates. “It’s packed to the hilt. (Lilley) is looking to increase the size slightly to give himself some more room.”

The expansion of the building will require driving four more piles into the water. Pike said Lilley hopes the expansion will leave him with enough room to store retail goods, build a counter for a cash register and allow more people to fit inside and “get out of the weather.”

Sunset Marina, 231 Front St., is a full-service operation with 150 slips in Casco Bay for local and transient vessels. It has operated there since 1994.

Board members said they appreciated Lilley obtaining the necessary permits to build in the shoreland zone and over protected tidal wetlands before coming before the board for site plan approval. 

“This is basically a nuts-and-bolts committee, so if you’ve got all your nuts and bolts in place, your good,” Chairwoman Caroline Hendry said.

The board unanimously approved the site plan.

The Planning Board on Tuesday also elected Rob Schreiber as its chairman for 2012, and presented Hendry with a pen set to thank her for her service leading the panel.

“I hope you’ll accept this knowing that we find you to be very distinguished,” Planning Director Tex Haeuser told Hendry.

Mario Moretto can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or Follow him on Twitter: @riocarmine.

This story was corrected on Dec. 20 to reflect Sunset Marina’s accommodations.