N.S. Giles Foundations Inc., a concrete and foundations company from Bangor, is opening a local branch in Auburn to have better access to the southern Maine market. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

This week the Buzz is building for 2021 and beyond.

First up: A $5.2 million investment and new Bangor neighbor for Auburn.

Bangor-based N.S. Giles Foundations Inc. will move into a new office and shop at 46 Wrights Landing to grow the company’s reach into Southern Maine, according to President Shane Giles.

He said the new location, which should wrap construction this summer, will give the company a good regional base to better oversee local projects as well as help with speed and efficiency.

N.S. Giles Foundations Inc. is “one of the largest commercial concrete contractors in the state,” Giles said. “We also have concrete pump trucks which we’re going to house in that facility, which will be in a better logistical place for us than bringing them out of Bangor to service the Portland area.”

The company had been looking for property for three years for an expansion. It has about 130 employees and works with 100 subcontractors on projects statewide. The new location will trigger limited new hiring, including pump operators.

“We’re pretty fortunate with what we have and the workload,” Giles said, adding that the company is about to start work in Portland’s Back Cove on underground stormwater storage tanks, a project taking close to 19,000 yards of concrete and more than 2 million pounds of reinforcing steel.

“We’ve got some really exciting things that are going on and the expansion into that area is certainly exciting for us as well,” he said. “It’s a great area, the access off the interstate is fantastic for us, we’re right off 95, we’re close to where we can get fuel, we’re near the airport. . . There’s definitely lots of opportunity for growth.”

Also growing: More room for plants

A worker walks across the frozen ground at Gammon’s Garden Center & Landscape Nursery on Route 4 in Auburn. The company broke ground Wednesday on a new glass conservatory. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal

After a banner year, Gammon’s Garden Center & Landscape Nursery at 2810 Turner Road in Auburn is building a 24- by 66-foot, steel-framed glass conservatory to expand its offerings and move to a year-round operation.

“It’s pretty exciting, honestly,” manager Tyler Gammon said. “It’s something my dad and I have been talking about for 10 years now.”

The 15-foot tall space is part of a roughly $750,000 project for the nursery that includes adding solar panels and heat pumps.

“It’s going to open us up to a whole realm of indoor plants,” he said. “We have so many people looking for succulents and poinsettias, tropicals like larger potted lime or orange trees. People who feel that cabin fever in the winter, even if they don’t come in to buy something, I think that it will be great to see some herbaceous life, to feel that warmth from the sun from the heat in there. I think it’s a great asset to the community.”

Sales nearly doubled in 2020 with “our busiest year we’ve ever had,” Gammon said, as people staying home due to the pandemic turned to gardening and an interest in growing their own food.

It was nice to see kids getting into it, he said. “With technology they get trapped more inside. It’s good that people are getting back to their roots, no pun intended.”

The glass conservatory broke ground Wednesday and they hope to have it finished by mid-April.

“We are always excited to see new companies come to Auburn, and existing companies continue to expand and grow here,” Glen Holmes, Auburn’s new director of community and business development, said.

New downtown investor

The Professional Building on Lisbon Street, at right, has changed hands again. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal file photo Buy this Photo

Less than a year after it changed hands, Lewiston’s Professional Building on Lisbon Street has been sold again.

RSP Lewiston bought the 20,000-square-foot office building this past December for $505,000 and spent about $100,000 on maintenance and capital repairs, according to broker Josh Soley of Maine Realty Advisors.

“After acquisition, (broker) Frank (Carr) took over the management and leasing of the property and was able to bring the building to 100% occupancy,” Soley said. “In the past three months, Frank brought 10-plus professional office users to the property.”

Carr then represented JL Dale, LLC in making an offer to buy the building for $565,000.

“(The buyer) is originally from Illinois and has recently retired from the United States Navy,” Carr said Wednesday. “One of her duty stations was the Naval Air Station in Brunswick. While there, she fell in love with Maine’s outdoors and history. 145 Lisbon St. is full of history, which interests her as an investor.”

Quick hits about business comings, goings and happenings. Have a Buzzable tip? Contact staff writer Kathryn Skelton at 689-2844 or [email protected]


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