Proposal for Explore Penobscot
The Hancock County Planning
395 State Street
Ellsworth, Maine 04605
(207) 667-7131 (207) 667-2099 (fax)
firstname.lastname@example.org / www.hcpcme.org
This proposal outlines steps to be taken toward the creation of a Bucksport
Area intermodal transportation plan. Recent changes in the regional economy,
transportation infrastructure, and community revitalization provide the right
environment for a careful review of the opportunities to develop passenger transportation
options to support tourism and economic development, while providing mobility
options to the residents of the region. This plan will incorporate input from
towns, state agencies and transportation stakeholders with short, medium and
long range demand forecasts to guide future planning and investments.
The four towns located around the Penobscot Narrows, Bucksport, Orland, Prospect
and Verona Island, constitute a mini-region at the crossroads between the larger
labor markets of Bangor, Ellsworth and Belfast. Each of these towns has functioned
independently, but all are increasingly connected by evolving economies, land
use and transportation linkages. Building upon natural, historic, and economic
resources this emerging region has the potential to:
Capture a larger share of the
expanding tourism market.
Enhance its year-round economic
investments to make optimal use of existing infrastructure and human resources.
Coordinate future infrastructure
investments to encourage circulation among the communities utilizing transit,
walking, bicycling, and the marine highway.
Transportation is a critical element in the
unfolding of the Penobscot Narrows’ economic development. Route 1, Route 15, and Route
46 serve as year-round commuting corridors and truck freight routes. Route
1 serves as a major seasonal tourist route between June and September. Major
transportation initiatives are increasing mobility through the region. These
Construction of the Waldo-Hancock
Renovation and improvements
along Route 15 and Route 46 corridors.
Expansion of transit services
Growth of recreational water
transportation along the Penobscot
“Gateway 1”corridor management
Increased commuting and freight
Questions to be answered include:
What are the recent trends
in transportation, population, and the economy?
How can historic assets such
as Fort Knox in Prospect
and Main Street in Bucksport benefit from pending changes in the transportation
How do we balance local road
access needs with increasing levels of through-traffic by commuters, trucks
How do we manage increasing
demands for parking at specific venues and along the corridor?
How do we provide safe routes
for pedestrians and cyclists?
How do we provide better access
for seniors and people with disabilities?
How do we promote tourism while
addressing congestion on Route One?
What land use policies and
mechanisms are supporting or conflicting with State and local goals?
Engage residents, businesses,
organizations, and local leaders in the Penobscot Narrows in analysis of their current and future transportation
Identify local cultural,
historical and natural resource values affected by recent changes in population,
economy and transportation and preferences for the future.
Build community consensus around
a preferred future for Penobscot Narrows transportation and land use linkages.
Identify local, regional,
and state investments and policies to support transportation goals, economic
development, and local needs.
and land use management strategies to preserve Route One as a regional corridor.
Critical elements for this planning process
Encouraging local involvement
and coordination with community.
Identifying trends that will
impact the region’s future transportation needs.
Identifying potential transportation
Identifying potential demand
for transportation services.
Identifying future transportation
Identify existing and potential
land use management strategies to support transportation strategies.
Task One: Public Involvement:
Meet individually with
select board and planning board representatives from Prospect, Verona Island, Bucksport
and Orland. Facilitate a process for identifying current needs and future
goals relating to passenger transportation. Request that each town nominate
one or more representatives for a future multi-town meeting. Topic areas
bicycle and pedestrian
elderly and non driving
population needs and services,
safe access to specific
traffic congestion on Route
Hold one meeting with the Department
of Conservation and their invitees to discuss their needs and future goals
relating to passenger transportation and resource management.
Conduct outreach interviews
with existing and potential service providers including bus, ferry, tour
operators, etc. Document their input and incorporate findings in preliminary
and final reports.
Consolidate input from
the four towns and Department of Conservation to identify common, divergent
and conflicting interests. Develop and map an annotated list of future
regional passenger transportation and tourism opportunities. Incorporate
findings from public input, findings from tasks two through five and transportation
providers. Prepare an interim report for the participants indicating these
issues and outlining a process for finding win-win solutions to divergences
Sponsor a regional meeting
of designated representatives from the towns and Department of Conservation
to review the interim report and identify and coordinate areas of common
interest, including identifying future public involvement opportunities,
ways the towns can formally adopt passenger transportation goals, and strategies
for implementing these goals.
Sponsor a regional public meeting
to present the findings from these meetings with towns. Present proposed
policies, programs and projects. Respond to and document questions and comments
Provide technical support to
towns to facilitate adopting recommendations consistent with study findings.
The MaineDOT will consider adopting relevant recommendations in the Six
Task Two: Inventory
of existing conditions, transportation infrastructure and services
Population and Economic
Workforce and Commuting
Tourism, Recreation and
Transportation: Road, Rail,
Related services: Transit,
Task Three: Inventory of existing land use policies that impact
- Future land use plans, zoning, site plans,
subdivision ordinances and related documents.
- Public infrastructure investments – e.g.
Bucksport River Waterfront, Department of Conservation Verona Island Boat
- Review use of Maine DOT and other publicly
owned land in the area of his study
- Identify land use strategies that will
support the success of transportation investments
Task Four: Demand forecasts for 5, 10 and 20 years, based on population
and socio-economic trends, for:
Highway use (employing secondary information
- Local and commuter travel
- Assess potential for excursion rail on
Bangor-Searsport or Bangor-Bucksport alignments. Possible excursion rail
with excursion river boat loops.
- Impacts of excursion trains on existing
- River cruises
- Ferry from Bucksport to Ft. Knox
- Smaller ocean going cruse ships
- Private recreational vessels
Access to attractions:
- Fort Knox
- Bridge tower
Commuter and residents needs:
- Park and Ride lots
- Car pooling
- Local & regional transit
Identify feasible transportation investments
Information gathered in
steps one through three and projections calculated in step four will be
reviewed with the advisory committee and MDOT representatives.
Identify capacity of existing
infrastructure and services to meet identified demands
Establish thresholds for
future infrastructure needs, including the need to address future pedestrian
access and safety on the new bridge will be identified.
Identify projects, programs
and policies to address unmet needs
Estimate costs of proposed
Identify projects for possible
inclusion in future Biennial Transportation Plans by the MaineDOT, as well
as other state and local public and private investments.
Draft and Final Reports:
A draft report will be prepared for review
by all partners and the public. A final report, with an executive summary will be prepared following
a comment period on the draft report. 100 copies of the Summary and 25 copies
of the full report will be provided, as well as a CD of the report. Interim
documents, maps and illustrations will be maintained on a publicly accessible
Local involvement in the planning process
is a key to assuring that the proposed changes serve local as well as regional needs. Local
involvement in planning is also an essential element in marshaling local resources
for implementation. The Hancock County Planning Commission (HCPC) would manage
the public involvement process, including creation of a local advisory committee,
providing information to the press, sponsoring initial open-ended meetings
for idea solicitation and organizing design workshop(s).
Coordination with community and economic development
will be managed by David Milan, Economic Development Director for the town
of Bucksport. The Hancock County Planning Commission, Eastern Maine
Development Corporation, Coastal Acadia Development Corporation and the Bucksport
Area Chamber of Commerce are expected to contribute as well.
Towns of Bucksport, Orland,
Prospect and Verona Island
Bucksport Economic Development
Director and Committee
Greater Bucksport Chamber of
Hancock County Planning Commission
Eastern Maine Development Corporation
/ Penobscot Valley Council of Governments
Maine Department of Conservation
Maine Department of Transportation
Maine State Planning Office
Summary of Project Tasks
of existing transportation infrastructure and services.
of existing and potential land use policies that impact transportation
feasible transportation investments
and Final Reports