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Updated: May 16, 2024

Plans advance for $8.3M emergency housing construction in Brunswick

rendering of building Courtesy / Tedford Housing Tedford Housing expects to break ground this summer on an $8.3 million emergency housing building.

After years of planning, nonprofit Tedford Housing is moving forward with an $8.3 million project to build emergency housing in Brunswick, on Thomas Point Road near Cook’s Corner.

Construction of the 17,568-square-foot emergency housing building will allow Tedford to consolidate its current adult and family shelters on Cumberland and Federal streets in Brunswick, as well as an administrative office.

Shelter capacity for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness will increase by 60%, according to a news release. The new building, on just over three acres, will also promote better-coordinated case management and other services.

“The new facility will feature separate secure wings for the adult and family shelters and has been thoughtfully designed to ensure safety and security,” said Andrew Lardie, Tedford’s executive director.

“Our staff’s proximity to one another will improve communication and coordination to make the entire organization more collaborative and effective.”

The project is expected to break ground this summer, with operations in the new emergency housing building sometime in 2025.

“Everyone in our community is entitled to a safe, secure place to sleep at night as well as the services necessary to help them access stable housing,” said Don Kniseley of the capital campaign committee for Tedford.

“It's going to take each of us doing our part to complete this public health infrastructure project that will improve the quality of life for so many people.”

Early donations enabled the property purchase and preliminary planning. Further financing for construction comes from donations, grants and short-term loans, including a $1.5 million allocation from Cumberland County’s American Rescue Plan Act funds and $362,000 from the Maine State Housing Authority.

Response to a community need

From 2022 to 2023, limited space caused Tedford to turn away 463 adults and 139 families, and its facilities had beds for only 5% of families and 13% of single adults who called.

The new building will include 10 family apartment units, four more than the current units. Each will have four beds, as well as living and dining spaces. There will be separate, secure wings for adult and family emergency housing facilities with a total of 64 emergency housing beds

The building will also have space for case management and administrative offices, conference and meeting rooms, along with a staff break room, mechanical room and storage space. The facility will be staffed 24 hours a day.

Founded in 1987, Tedford Housing provides an emergency homeless shelter, supportive housing for previously homeless families and individuals, homelessness prevention services and outreach services case management. It has grown from a single shelter into a comprehensive resource for reducing homelessness. Its primary service area is northern Cumberland, Sagadahoc and Lincoln counties.

The current family shelter is owned by the Brunswick Topsham Housing Authority, which will decide the next use of the building after Tedford’s family shelter moves to the new facility. Tedford owns the adult shelter building and is considering a range of options for the site’s future use. 

Norway Savings Bank recently delivered a check for $16,500 to Tedford for the project, as part of an overall $50,000 commitment to the organization.

6 people with sign
Courtesy / Norway Savings Bank
From left, Dave Damour with Tedford Housing’s board of directors; Tedford Executive Director Andrew Lardie; Norway Savings Bank Midcoast Market Manager Penny Anderson, Commercial Lending Vice President Larissa Darcy and Midcoast Market Mortgage Loan Officer Vice President Karry Kane; and Don Kniseley with Tedford’s capital campaign cabinet.

“Homelessness is a human services crisis, a public health crisis, and an economic crisis,” said Larissa Darcy, the bank’s commercial lending vice president. “This project will facilitate Tedford in creating housing stability that will have a significant and lasting impact on all of us.” 

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