Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

Updated: February 13, 2024

Portland seeks business tenant for tiny, eight-sided waterfront property

Gazebo exterior Photo / Renee Cordes Once operated as an ice cream stand, this city-owned gazebo on Portland's waterfront has been vacant for the past few years.

The city of Portland is seeking a business to lease a small waterfront gazebo and set up shop there, selling food, souvenirs or other goods to passers-by.

Once operated as an ice cream stand, the wooden, octagonal structure has sat vacant for years. But the city is trying to bring it back to life, ideally with a food vendor, local artist or retailer as a tenant.

The space is tiny, at 77 square feet. And while electricity is available, there's no water hookup — meaning a food vendor would have to handle preparation off-site. 

The gazebo is on Commercial Street between the Maine State Pier and the Ocean Gateway cruise ship terminal and event venue, and is adjacent to the Eastern Trail.

In its official promotional materials for the gazebo, the city highlights the location “on a popular stretch of city-owned property where cruise ship passengers, locals and visitors alike pass by on their way to area restaurants, shops and recreational trails.”

For those with a potential interest, the annual recommended rent is a minimum of $1,000 a month, with expressions of interest due to the city by March 1.

Jen DeRice, the city’s assistant parks director, told Mainebiz that the contract terms will depend on the type and number of proposals that come in.

“There is no minimum for an initial contract but the goal is to initiate a long-term relationship to activate this space,” she explained.

On Monday, DeRice said she had received one serious inquiry so far. 

“It's definitely a great location for someone so we'll see how much interest is generated,” she said.

The city also owns the castle-like building in Deering Oaks Park, which in the past has been occupied by food vendors. Today, it's the home of the city's park rangers, according to DeRice.

More information

Expressions of interest must be submitted to Jen DeRice, 212 Canco Road, Portland, ME 04103, or via email at, by 2 p.m. on March 1.

Sign up for Enews


Order a PDF