This week the Buzz is swinging, building, crystal-balling and putting a price tag on parental peace and quiet.

(Spoiler alert: People in New Hampshire would pay way more to get away from their kids for a week than we would in Maine.)

Procter & Gamble’s Tambrands plant on Hotel Road in Auburn. The city approved its latest expansion plans this week. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

First up: The Auburn Planning Board approved Tambrands’ proposed $15 million, 116,000-square-foot Hotel Road expansion.

“It will allow them to expand their production and warehouse building in a way that makes sense logically for the current production line setup,” Eric Cousens, Auburn’s director of planning and permitting, told the board Tuesday night.

The substantial investment will add 17 employees between its four work shifts, but isn’t expected to increase local truck traffic.

“From what I understand … the new facility will allow them to store product more efficiently and make sure that any trucks leaving the site are full, whereas now sometimes trucks have to leave the site with less than a full load,” Cousens said.


Tambrands, a Procter & Gamble company, is looking to buy 15.7 acres of abutting Auburn-Lewiston Municipal Airport land to make the project happen. The Auburn City Council has agreed to the sale; the Lewiston City Council has yet to vote on it.

The facility produces roughly 9.5 million tampons a day.

And while they were approving new development

The Auburn Planning Board greenlit two other projects.

One, at 386 Minot Ave. by developer Norman Robert, is a $265,822 project to restore a damaged apartment building and turn former business space into five new apartments, bringing that development up to 22 units.

The other creates the Auburn Commerce Center off Kittyhawk Avenue.


That $715,000 project by Kittyhawk Property Development creates a commercial subdivision with three lots ranging from 4.8 acres to 14.9 acres with additional potential to expand one lot, according to the Planning Board application.

Developers will build a 680-foot street from Harriman Drive for access this summer.

The lots are forecast to support about 200,000 square feet of new buildings.

“There has been some interest for large warehouse or a large, say, distribution building with distribution employees that could be fairly significant in size, and if that project went in, then lot 2 would be developed as one big lot, most likely,” Stoneybrook Land Use consultant Michael Gotto told the board.

Now, to see who builds.

It must be spring in Maine


Tabers Restaurant, Miniature Golf & Driving Range opened for the season at 470 Lake Shore Drive in Auburn on Thursday, one day ahead of a forecast nor’easter.

Owner Dan Hargreaves said they had to get the food prepped, onions sliced and make sure COVID-19-related precautions were up-to-date.

“We have the regular normal setup we have to do turning everything back on, coming out of hibernation,” he said. “There was a line at the windows, a few of our regulars were right there waiting for us.”

Hargreaves said he’s looking forward to a good season, and “hopefully the weather will be nice like it was last year.”

And hopefully it is, after Friday: Hunter Tubbs, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Gray, said a nor’easter was still bound for the state and expected to leave 2 to 4 inches of snow in Lewiston-Auburn.

“It will be a very heavy, wet snow with the potential for power outages,” he said.


Ah, spring.

Ah, peace and quiet surveyed parents and guardians who have been working from home the past year asking how much they’d pay to get away from their families for a week, hypothetically.

In West Virginia, the breaking point sounds near: It topped the list at $2,448.

In Maine, we’re chill, or cheap, coming in the lowest in the country at $309. New Hampshire was $1,439.

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

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