May 24, 2020

Coastal firm asks Brewer for leg-up> Trans-Tech seeks quicker move into industrial park

BREWER — City officials today will consider an emergency request that would help pave the way for a coastal manufacturing company that is in the process of moving into the city’s East-West Industrial Park reserve area.

During this week’s meeting, which begins at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall, city councilors will be asked to approve a proposal aimed at assisting Trans-Tech Industries Inc., which announced plans to move here last July.

According to the emergency preamble filed with the city, approval would take effect immediately — rather than in the usual 10 days — to avoid any delay in the start of construction.

The company has since acquired three adjacent parcels in the city industrial reserve area and plans to begin work soon on a 36,000-square-foot manufacturing facility. Before it can do so, however, some adjustments are needed to the city’s original subdivision plan.

To that end, city councilors will be asked to approve a redesigned cul-de-sac at the end of Coffin Avenue, which would be reduced by about 100 feet, and to approve minor modifications to five lots and drainage easements. All of the changes would be reflected in an amended subdivision plan.

The request was submitted to the council with the planning board’s unanimous (6-0) recommendation to approve the changes.

Trans-Tech owners Ken Peters and Robert Neal earlier told city officials that their company must expand and diversify if it is to survive, but that expansion is impossible at their current facilities in Southwest Harbor and Hancock.

The company, which makes metal tanks for commercial and industrial use, also lacks facilities able to accommodate the bridge crane that would enable Trans-Tech to build the larger, heavier tanks that would allow it to compete nationally.

Among the other items on Tuesday’s agenda is a presentation by representatives of the Maine Oil Dealers Association, who have asked to meet with councilors to discuss the economic impact of oil dealers in the community, the competitiveness of their products and the need for a level playing field for the oil industry.

MODA requested the talk in a recent letter to City Manager James Kotredes.

“Since the representatives of the proposed natural gas pipeline have been active in promoting the use of natural gas in communities across the state, we felt it was important to remind local councils of the economic impact Maine oil dealers have in their local communities,” the letter stated. “We have a significant impact in terms of taxes paid, employment of Maine citizens, and the use of local suppliers to support our businesses.”

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