To meet expected housing demand, the city will need 2,905 new dwelling units by 2030, according to South Portland’s recent Housing Needs Assessment. “Increase housing” has also been designated by South Portland City Council as a 2023 goal.
The Yard South will help address this shortage by providing 1,200 units of housing for a range of income levels. The Contract Zone draft includes height bonuses to incentivize affordable and attainable (missing middle) units and sustainable development practices.
It’s estimated that it would take over 5 Earths to support the human population if everyone’s consumption patterns were like the average American. What can South Portland do to reduce their ecological footprint?
Land is used more efficiently when cities and developments are designed to support height and density. Density reduces the cost of building infrastructure, offsets the expense of brownfield remediation, and encourages the development of affordable housing.
The Yard South is currently located in the Shipyard zoning district which permits buildings up to 86’. To construct the density needed to provide open space, increase diversity, and stimulate neighborhood engagement – we are asking for additional height.
The Contract Zone draft includes space and bulk regulations that are a starting place for discussion and are not final. With the calculations we’ve done so far, the highest building we’ve determined will be 140’ max. and the lowest will be 30’. The space and bulk regulations propose a range of height zones to allow for different building types, and account for buildings stepping down at Madison Street and Bug Light Park to improve neighborhood compatibility.
Transportation is the largest contributor of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) in the U.S. To reduce GHG emissions, The Yard South proposes that existing bus service be extended to the Eastern Waterfront and three bus stops be added to service this development, Bug Light Park, and existing businesses. One bus stop will be located at the waterfront to allow for easy transfer to a proposed water transit system.
The water transit system will provide a direct connection to downtown Portland, Maine and reduce traffic on Broadway and across the Casco Bay Bridge. The water transit system could be expanded to Roux Institute and destinations along the Fore River.
The Yard South will incorporate Complete Streets and Shared Streets planning to prioritize pedestrians, bicyclists and transit riders of all ages and abilities. Street designs will focus on safety over speed and be places to walk, dine, and play.
An accessible waterfront space will provide the community with the opportunity to engage with the Fore River for the first time in this site’s history. The Yard South will provide an integrated network of safe pedestrian and bike trails and inviting open spaces to improve health and overall well-being.
Brownfield redevelopment generates growth on previously developed sites thereby reducing impact on natural areas that are essential to Maine’s values.
PK has assumed the responsibility to remediate contamination that resulted from shipbuilding at the Liberty Shipyard. Anyone redeveloping a Brownfield site must perform Site assessment and cleanup activities in accordance with State (MaineDEP) and Federal (EPA) Brownfield laws that require the Site owner/developer to identify onsite contaminants and to adequately remediate those contaminants prior to Site redevelopment. These guidelines ensure that future users/occupants of a Brownfield Site are not exposed to any of the industrial contaminants which existed at the Site.
Examples of local projects which were constructed on remediated Brownfield Sites include Bug Light Park, the South Portland Housing Authority’s Thornton Heights apartment complex, the Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine on Thompsons Point, the Portland Housing Authority’s Boyd Street and Front Street apartments, Bayside Bowl in Portland, The Roux Campus, and 58 Fore (Portland Foreside Development).
The Yard South site-wide cleanup plan includes:
A Contract Zone is a land use regulation tool. In this case, it’s an agreement between South Portland and the owners of the Yard South property to rezone the property to permit uses and regulations that encourage dense, residential development, and placemaking. This agreement also allows us to remove currently permitted uses such as petroleum tank farms.
The Contract Zone includes certain conditions or limitations that must be agreed to by both the City and the developer for the duration of the contract.
Once submitted, The Yard South Contract Zone Application and Presentations will provide the following documents, reports, and more:
Once the contract zone application has been formally submitted, we will post a link on this website.
If the Yard South Contract Zone is approved by City Council, we will move forward with a Major Subdivision application. Once the subdivision is in place, Site Plan and further permitting and building review procedures will follow. During the Subdivision process there will be opportunities for the public to comment in front of the Planning Board on the Preliminary and Final Plan applications.
The Planning Board will be evaluating each submission by the following standards, and others:
The Major Subdivision application will include the following exhibits, revised reports, and more: