Performance Standards for Large Scale Developments

Description: Until relatively recently, non-residential development in mid-coast Maine reflected the traditional pattern of small businesses, schools, professional offices and personal services located on or within walking distance of the village main street. Industrial buildings, if present, were often sited within or near the village center, usually close to residential neighborhoods. Most buildings were sized to fit the needs of the community or its limited market area. New development, which is primarily automobile oriented, is locating on the fringes of mid-coast communities in order to take advantage of better access, cheaper, and more abundant land. New buildings are often large and bear little resemblance to the traditional New England building form and tend to be accompanied by acres of paved parking with little greenspace; a stark contrast to the identity and image of mid-coast communities.

The purpose of this report is to ensure that new development that does take place will reflect the positive characteristics of their host communities. Large scale development performance standards are designed to be integrated into the performance standard section of a town’s existing site plan review ordinance. If a project meets the definition of a large scale development, it would need to comply with all applicable performance standards in order to be approved by the planning board. The performance standards are intended to be as objective as possible because it is important for both the developer and the planning board to have a common understanding of how they can be satisfied.

The report includes standards for building design, outdoor sales, lighting, landscaping, parking, screening, pedestrian and bicycle facilities, building reuse, location with the community and community impacts.

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Source: Maine State Planning Office
Date: 2006
Format: PDF Document

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