Developer hopes to replace Scarborough Downs with new downtown area

A developer wants to turn Scarborough Downs into a new downtown area. (WGME)

SCARBOROUGH (WGME) – A developer wants to turn Scarborough Downs into a new downtown area.

The nearly 500-acre property would be turned into a village center with homes, businesses and green space.

Developers and the town have agreed to a deal that would give the developers a substantial tax concession.

According to the assistant town manager, the tax break could add up to as much as $81 million if the project goes as planned.

The developers say they need the deal because of the size and scope of the project, but they'll only get it if they deliver.

“The only dollar commitment that they’re making, that they have to pay us, is whatever our agreement is percentage-wise on money that gets paid to them,” Roccy Risbara of Crossroads Holdings, LLC said. “If we don’t create any value in the downs, we don’t get any money back.”

In response to the proposed deal, a group of Scarborough residents released a statement.

"This will be the largest financial commitment the town has ever made. (The) 30-year agreement could have a significant negative impact on the town's financial situation, (and) radically change the town's character."

A public forum on the proposal will be held Wednesday at the downs at 6 p.m.

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