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June 19, 2024

$2.8M industrial space in Kennebec County aims to serve mid-size contractors

A rendering shows a barebones building with garage doors Rendering / Courtesy, Kennebec Roofing The 16,500-square-foot Kennebec Roofing Industrial Annex will offer at least 10 units to local contractors and others in a tight real estate market.

Prefabricated parts of an industrial steel building are due to arrive in Winslow this week, as the next step of a project offering space for at least 10 local contractors and other businesses in a tight real estate market.

George Lint, the owner of Kennebec Roofing in Waterville, came up with the idea for the $2.8 million, 16,500-square-foot facility — with mezzanine offices, garages and amenities — to house mid-size building contractors. They include businesses such as roofing companies, flooring installers, electricians, garage door companies, plumbers and HVAC contractors. 

The spaces will also be available as warehouses or storefronts. A unit for sports organizations, available for rent by the hour or day for practice and games, will be available, along with year-round storage facilities for boats and RVs.

The facility at 875 China Road, which is also Route 137, is named the Kennebec Roofing Industrial Annex, or KIA, in memory of Lint’s daughter Kierra “Kia” Ann Lint.

This closeup photo shows the owner of Kennebec Roofing with his daughter.
Photo / Courtesy, The Lint Family
George Lint and his daughter Kierra “Kia” Ann Lint.

Lint, a Winslow native, said the annex represents the culmination of one of his major business goals. 

“I am excited to see my dream of developing a much-needed commercial and multi-use facility in my hometown become reality,” he said. “I’m looking forward to future expansion plans to benefit the entire Winslow community.” 

Lint said the annex will offer flexible lease options; a year-round, climate-controlled environment; ample parking for tenants and clients; secure outdoor and indoor storage for equipment and materials; custom-building of units to meet specific business needs; and high-bay commercial doors for large equipment and vehicles.

Financing for the project includes a $1.5 million loan from Kennebec Savings Bank plus $1.3 million in cash.

A growing business

Lint started Kennebec Roofing in 1998 after training on the job with other roofing companies. His business offers services throughout central and coastal Maine.

For many years, the business was headquartered at his own property in Vassalboro. 

“The last 10 years, things started growing really fast,” he told Mainebiz. “Every year was a record year.”

He outgrew his original location and began looking for another. He liked 90 Airport Road in Waterville but was outbid. So he bought the land in Winslow with the intention of building his own facility.

Then he learned that the Waterville property was once again available. So he bought it and set up his company there.

Amid all the moving plans, he had talked with contractors and Realtors and learned that industrial and office space was pretty scarce. 

In his travels, he said, he also noticed that other parts of the country offered industrial, multi-tenant complexes for small to mid-size contractors and other users.

“For example, in Florida, you see these large buildings with little shops — maybe bicycle repair, paint shops — in the industrial area,” he said.

An idea gets rolling

Since he already owned the land at 875 China Road in Winslow, he realized there was a market opportunity to cater to contractors who need space. He said it could also be an opportunity for contractors to network.

“The idea got rolling,” he said. “The connections between, say, a sider and a roofer or a painter — you’re getting to know each other and to network. And there’s the convenience for customers coming in and being able to meet with, say, a painting contractor and siding contractor.”

This rendering shows a view from the second story down to the entry door.
Rendering / Courtesy, Kennebec Roofing
The interior includes a mezzanine for offices, as shown in this rendering.

Lint credited his wife with the idea of tapping into the sports market.  Local coaches have begun contacting him about the idea of leasing space for practices, he said. And he has a long-term plan to build a second facility dedicated to sports on the property’s additional acreage.

“We realized that would be equally as needed as contractor space,” he said.

With a goal to be operational in October, he’s already signed two industrial tenants and has heard interest from others.

The Central Maine Growth Council, in conjunction with the town of Winslow, is available to discuss public-private finance tools and economic development programs to support businesses looking to benefit from the development project, said Garvan Donegan, the council’s director of planning, innovation, and economic development.

The project “brings much-needed commercial square-footage inventory into the Winslow and regional market, providing opportunities for businesses and entrepreneurs to establish a presence in Winslow,” Donegan said. 

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