An open letter from Bruce Van Note of the Maine Turnpike Authority
Dear Forest Lake Association Members,
My name is Bruce Van Note, the Director of Policy and Planning here at the Maine Turnpike Authority (MTA). As you may have heard, the MTA is renovating the Service plazas in Cumberland and Gray. We know how special Forest Lake is to you, and we wanted to provide you information so that you will know, as we do, that this project should have little or no impact on you and other area residents.
Attached [below] you will find a general project information sheet, and two aerial views showing the proposed Cumberland project. Additionally, the following project highlights may be of special interest to you and other residents in your area.
- No trees or other vegetation is being cut between the existing developed area of the Cumberland Service plaza and Forest Lake Road.
- The drive through will be accessible only from the Turnpike. The existing access roads from Forest Lake Road and Route 100 to existing parking areas near the plazas will be maintained. Just like today, this will allow people to drive to those existing lots, park and walk into the plazas.
- Additional landscaping is being added to buffer the new drive-thru in Cumberland. We are investigating whether additional sound mitigation is feasible.
- No additional light poles are being added.
- Clearing east of the Turnpike southerly of the Gray Service Plaza will occur to improve safety and visibility for northbound Turnpike travelers. Although this should not have any significant impact to nearby residents, it will be visible to Turnpike travelers and thus mention it for information.
In sum, it does not appear that this renovation project will impact area residents much if at all, with the possible exception of some additional vehicles being near the plazas during construction.
Some of you may be receiving a notice from the Town regarding an informational meeting. Although there will not be much additional information provided there from that contained in this email, we certainly welcome your attendance. Further, if you have questions or concerns, we would be glad to respond to them.
Bruce Van Note