Brunswick Sewer District to Lease 7,800 s.f. Brunswick Landing Building from MRRA
MRRA and BSD Working Together to Benefit the Community
The Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority is pleased to announce that it has leased a 7,800 square foot building at 180 Orion Street (former Navy Building 153) to the Brunswick Sewer District. The building was previously used as a recycling center by the Navy. MRRA and Sewer District have formed a strong partnership since last summer when BSD began maintaining and cleaning MRRA’s extensive sewer system. BSD will have six employees based at Brunswick Landing, officials said.
“We’re pleased to be able to help the Sewer District with their needs,” MRRA Executive Director Steve Levesque said. “We’ve developed an excellent working relationship with the BSD and we hope to continue what’s proven to be a great partnership.”
For more than a decade, the Sewer District has wanted a building for sheltering its equipment. The Treatment Plant, which houses both the Collections and Treatment Divisions, was never designed to accommodate both crews and equipment. The idea of a garage has been brought up multiple times in the last decade, but each time the idea was thwarted by costs. Wes Wharff, BSD Collection Division Supervisor, initiated the search for a new facility and learned that Building 153 was available.
When Wes approached his boss, Rob Pontau, about the possibility of BSD utilizing a building at Brunswick Landing, Rob responded with “tell me what you want and I’ll see what I can do.” Wes did some asking around and found out that the former NASB recycling facility was available. He told Rob, who then contacted MRRA staff to set up a time for viewing.
“After seeing the facility, we knew it was a great fit,” Rob said. “It makes sense for the District to have a satellite facility at Brunswick Landing. Many of our facilities are on the Cook’s Corner side of town and the location offers quick access to Topsham, where we also manage the collection system for the Topsham Sewer District.”
The only sticking point for BSD was cost. Pontau approached Tom Brubraker, MRRA Public Works and Utilities manager, about creating a maintenance agreement in which MRRA would pay BSD for cleaning and maintaining their sewer infrastructure.
To help offset the costs of the lease, BSD and MRRA have formed an operations and maintenance agreement in which BSD will manage and maintain the sewer infrastructure at Brunswick Landing.
It’s a win-win situation. MRRA gets the expertise and assistance of BSD in maintaining a sewer infrastructure, which MRRA still owns. MRRA leases an otherwise vacant building, and BSD gets a much needed facility to store vehicles and equipment.
“None of this would have been possible without the cooperation of MRRA staff,” Pontau said. “They have been very accommodating and have done whatever was necessary to ensure we could work out a deal that benefits everyone.”
BSD general manager Leonard Blanchette noted that he is quite pleased, but not surprised, that Rob and Wes were able to think outside the box, and work with MRRA to find a solution that met both parties’ needs – “We get a facilities garage and MRRA gets operations and maintenance services. A win-win situation.”