The plan calls for a hotel designed to look like the grand summer hotels of the last century.

SANFORD (AP) – It would have a six-story hotel with 875 rooms and a 120,000-square-foot casino. Also included would be a convention center, performing arts center, restaurants and retail shops.

All of those patrons would have plenty of parking: 4,500 spaces altogether, most of them in a five-story parking garage.

The Town Planning Board on Monday released a sketch plan and a preliminary application by Penobscot and Passamaquoddy tribes to build the $650 million facility that requires the approval of state voters in November.

The long-awaited preliminary proposal, delivered to Sanford’s planning office, provides more details about the scope.

But board members indicated they have no plans to review the proposal for the time being. The board said it doesn’t want to review a project based on an activity that is currently illegal in Maine.

Prepared by Sebago Technics, a Westbrook engineering firm, the plan calls for a hotel designed to look like the grand summer hotels of the last century. The 120,000-square-foot casino building would have a 60,000-square-foot convention center; a 30,000-square foot performing arts theater; eight restaurants; and four retail shops. There would also be an 18-hole golf course with clubhouse.

The development would be located near the middle of the roughly 350 acres now under option to the tribes. Existing woods on the site’s periphery would be retained. The entrance would be via Smada Drive off Route 109, across from the airport.

The plan was submitted under the town’s new contract zoning, approved this spring by Town Meeting. Contract zoning allows areas of the town to be rezoned for specific projects. It also allows the town to impose fees related to the review and to negotiate payments to mitigate the project’s impact on town roads, schools and other infrastructure.

But the planning board, which takes part in the project review, voted not to review the proposal until after the Nov. 4 referendum.


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