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January 16, 2009 | last updated November 30, 2011 4:49 pm

Ocean Properties bows out of pier project

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From Joe

Once again, an example of the city of Portland's inability to act quickly when the deal with Ocean Properties first presented itself, dragging things on indefinitely. Will they ever learn? Probably not.

Citing other commitments, Ocean Properties is backing out of negotiations for the development of the Maine State Pier.

Portland Mayor Jill Duson announced the developer's decision this morning, expressing disappointment that the Portsmouth, N.H.-based development company would not pursue the $100 million waterfront project. "We understand that in the passage of time since the release of the initial RFP, Ocean Properties has taken on other major development projects, and that the scale and work necessary to implement the Maine State Pier does not fit in to their existing workload," said Duson in her statement.

The project isn't dead, despite the departure of its second developer in less than two months, Duson said. In December, The Olympia Cos., which won the original bid for the project, abandoned the project after questions of ownership of the land under the pier went unresolved, affecting its ability to finance the project. Duson said she is asking City Manager Joe Gray to present a list of options for rehabilitating the Maine State Pier with his recommendation to the City Council next month.

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