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Updated: February 7, 2024

58 units of affordable housing planned for Bucksport

aerial of land with drawn red arrow Courtesy / Penquis Penquis proposes to build 58 units of senior and family housing on vacant land at 44 Middle St. in Bucksport.

A Bangor nonprofit dedicated to eliminating poverty plans to build 58 units of affordable housing in Bucksport.

Penquis, a community action agency that’s part of the Maine Community Action Partnership, received unanimous approval last month from the Bucksport Planning Board to construct a 40-unit multistory apartment building at 44 Middle St., for residents age 55 and over.

The board previously approved Penquis’s proposal for another building at the same site, with 18 units of family housing.

Jason Bird, the nonprofit’s housing development director, told the board that Penquis purchased the vacant 12-acre site from Knoxview Apartments LLC in December.

Both phases of the project depend on approval of funding applications submitted to MaineHousing, Bird said.

The buildings would use electric heat pumps in order to avoid fossil fuel consumption.

The 40 units would all be one-bedrooms, with parking and grading accessible to wheelchairs. A dozen or more apartments would be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The units would be designed to allow residents to age in place.

Penquis has developed a handful of projects in the region that are similar to the 40-unit structure.

“We try to build largely the same structure because we can take the guesswork out of costs and change orders,” he said, adding that there is some variety to the facades so they don’t all look the same.

Plans and contractors won’t be finalized until financing is approved, he added.

Optimally, Bird said, both phases would break ground this fall, with one request for proposals issued for subcontractors in order to increase efficiency.

The project would be located just north of an existing complex called Knoxview Apartments, which includes a multistory, 38-unit elderly housing building and 16 units of family housing in seven buildings, according to the application.

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