News & Highlights
The City Community Development Program has successfully implemented projects to improve the livability of the City using CDBG funds since 2004. Please read about a few of these beneficial projects below.
Davidson's Beach Access
Davidson's Beach is located in Ferry Village near the Coast Guard facility, just across the Fore River from Portland. The City used CDBG funds to replace the deteriorated wooden steps that provided public access to the beach, in the summer of 2015. The new granite and metal stairway will be more resilient to the elements and provide easy access to the waterfront.
This park is adjacent to the Redbank Community Center in the predominantly low-income Redbank neighborhood. In recent years, the former school property in Redbank Village that had stood vacant and vandalized was rehabilitated into the Community Center, and in the 2013 program year, the empty lot next to it was turned into the new Redbank Park thanks to CDBG funds. The park now features a permanent pavilion, bike racks, a playground, a basketball court, benches and trees, and has become a new focal point and amenity for the neighborhood as it works towards revitalization.
Read more about the park and its impact on the community!
Mill Creek Transit Hub
This bus shelter/transit hub was financed by CDBG as well as Federal Transit Administration grants, City Bus Capital Reserve Funds, and City General Funds. The hub allows for timed transfers, and a comfortable and convenient experience for transit riders, providing indoor and outdoor waiting areas, seating, trash receptacles, a clock, route and schedule information, and outdoor landscaping. The structure was designed in accordance with the Knightville/Mill Creek neighborhood "Village Commercial" design standards to blend with the character of this unique mixed-use neighborhood. The project broke ground in June of 2013 and opened to the public in May of 2014.
KNIGHTVILLE SIDEWALKS & SEWER SEPARATION
This project, located in the 66.2% low/moderate income Knightville neighborhood, was implemented in two phases. Phase I addressed the need for enhanced sewer capacity in the growing urban area by installing over almost 5,000 feet of new storm drains. These new drains successfully separated over 15 acres of urban development from the City's combined sewer system, freeing up capacity for increased economic development in the area, and alleviating ongoing storm water flow into Casco Bay. Phase I also involved the reconstruction of sidewalks on the section of Ocean Street between Broadway Street and Waterman Drive.
Phase II of the Knightville sidewalk rehabilitation project widened and fixed thousands of feet of broken and damaged sidewalks, and provided handicap accessible "tip downs" at a number of intersections. Cottage Road, Ocean Street, and Thomas Street have been repaved, and new lines and parking spaces painted. New LED streetlights have been installed, and the Legion Square rotary has also been redesigned with cobblestones.
Phase I of this project was financed with the assistance of a $306,986.88 PY 2011 Community Development Block Grant, and Phase II with a $125,000 PY 2012 grant.
MILL CREEK PARK
This City Park provides green space and recreational opportunities to the residents of the Knightville/Mill Creek area, and citizens working or visiting in the neighborhood. The City and The Friends of Mill Creek Park organization partnered to develop a plan to make much-needed improvements and repairs to the park in 2008.
Using the goals and priorities first developed in this planning study, the City financed and completed major improvements to the Park in 2012. These multi-year improvements consisted of pedestrian pathways, pond clean up, stream crossings, improved access to the Veterans' Memorial, and reconstruction of the Gazebo. A talented landscape architect also designed functional public gardens and plantings for the Park, and new architectural elements such as stone gardens, benches, and a new entrance have all helped create a beautiful public space for neighborhood residents.
The following Community Development Block Grants financed the majority of this project for the City of South Portland:
2008 Mill Creek Planning: $10,439
2009 Mill Creek Park Benches: $5,912
2010 Mill Creek Park Improvements, Phase I: $100,000
2011 Mill Creek Park Improvements, Phase II: $220,123
2012 Mill Creek Park Improvements, Phase III: $152,385
2014 Mill Creek Park Improvements, Phase IV: $184,704
We encourage you to take the time to visit and see all that Mill Creek Park has to offer!