“The B-6 zone encourages this district to acquire a distinctly urban feel through development that emphasizes a quality pedestrian experience, promotes public transit, and demonstrates exemplary urban design. The zone promotes a range of uses to achieve twenty-four urban vitality." Portland Land Use Code
The B-6 Eastern Waterfront Mixed-Use zone, and accompanying B6 Building Height Overlay Map, were adopted by the City Council for the 58 Fore Street site on June 1, 2015, consistent with the recommendations set forth by “A Master Plan for Redevelopment of the Eastern Waterfront”. Previous to the Portland City Council adopting the zoning and height overlay for the site, the Council held three public workshops to review the Portland Planning Board’s unanimous recommendation from February 24, 2015. The extension of the B-6 Eastern Waterfront Mixed-Use zoning and B-6 Building Height Overlay map onto the upland portion of the 58 Fore Street Property, as well as the Eastern Waterfront Port zoning onto the waterfront portion of the property, are all critical components to the realization of the visions set forth by the Eastern Waterfront Master Plan and associated Design Guidelines for the Eastern Waterfront.
Prior to the City Council vote, the CPB2 team worked for more than eight months with the City planning staff and neighboring communities, listening to the recommendations of the Planning Staff as well as addressing comments that emerged from meetings with Munjoy Hill neighbors looking to retain views and have more certainty around future uses on Fore Street.
The CPB2 team was amenable to several accommodations on its rezoning application to address these comments and interest groups, including:
The Eastern Waterfront Master Plan, and the CPB2 team, is focused on connecting the community to the waterfront through increased public access down through the 58 Fore Street site, to the water’s edge. The best way to achieve this connectivity is to create a contextual frontage on the Fore Street, essentially establishing a front door for the site. The result being impressive sight lines of the waters of Casco Bay, as well as direct access to the waterfront for the surrounding communities. The neighborhood will finally be able to walk through the site, directly to Portland’s waterfront. This enhanced public accessibility, as well as the mixed uses and housing diversity envisioned for the site, will create a truly diverse urban redevelopment and a new waterfront neighborhood. 58 Fore Street has the potential to be a landmark destination for the city of Portland and beyond, and will some day serve as an economic engine for the City.
Future site-specific master planning processes will establish appropriate building heights that respect view corridors, the historic nature of the site, and site topography, all in the context of the B-6 Building Height Overlay Map.
The rezoning of the 58 Fore Street site was further reaffirmed in November 2015 with the impressive results of a City wide referendum vote, winning every district in City by a total of 26 points.