March 31, 2014

Back to the drawing board for Frye Island parking lot - By Jim Beers

On March 6th, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court ruled to deny Friends of Raymond Cape’s (FORC) Rule 80B Complaint to require the Town of Raymond to issue a moratorium on certain development applications, regarding the parking space for Frye Island. With over 200 signatures in support of their cause, FORC sought to have the project denied as it wasn't in line with Raymond's comprehensive plan. 

All sides are trying to find a solution for the near 50-car parking lot that has been asked for by the Town of Frye Island.  Residential and environmental issues have been at the forefront of this two year long process, with traffic and safety concerns also playing a vital role. The initial suit was originally denied by the planning board amid questions of unsafe conditions with traffic, as well as "green space" and storm water potential. 

"Ideas of creating a commercial standards lot in a residential area have spurred high emotions in this complex and sensitive case. With this latest ruling by the Supreme Court, the Town of Frye Island would need to submit a new/different application, or wait a year to submit the same one, in going forward," said Raymond town executive assistant Danielle Loring.

The proposed park and ride/lot is meant to ease congestion at the ferry landing, and minimize traffic backing up onto Cape Road, but the most recent plan submitted by Frye Island was denied, deemed too small for its intended use. "It’s a near 26 acre piece of land, with 15 percent of it proposed for the park and ride. Land owners and residents feel their concerns should be addressed with its construction," said Loring. Representatives on this issue for Frye Island could not be reached for comment. 

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