Pineland Farms Redevelopment

Pineland Farms Redevelopment

Libra Foundation, New Gloucester, Maine

(2000 - present)

The 2,000-acre Pineland Farms property was developed by the State of Maine in 1908 as the Maine School for the Feeble Minded. During the 1950s, the facility housed 1,500 residents and included a power plant, a wastewater treatment plant, 27 buildings, forests, and a self-sufficient farm. October Corporation (a subsidiary of Libra Foundation) purchased the property in 2000 and redeveloped the property into a viable office/business campus and agricultural center.

SME provided engineering design and permitting expertise for the redevelopment of Pineland, including demolition of select structures, and renovation and new construction of over 300,000 square feet of buildings. SME’s services extended to the construction of a working farm, one of the largest equestrian centers in the northeastern United States, a cheese-making facility, a year-round hydroponic greenhouse, and 30 kilometers of cross-country ski trails.


At Pineland, SME was tasked with providing quick turn-around environmental investigations, design drawings, and permit applications for many of the projects. We prepared the necessary applications; coordinated informational meetings; and through close cooperation with the regulatory agencies, obtained approvals allowing the Owner to begin redevelopment within just five months of SME receiving authorization to proceed.

Project Outcome and Value Added

For this project, SME conducted a hydrogeologic investigation and successfully located a groundwater supply for the campus and agricultural use areas. We also completed RCRA closure of the former institutional Pineland facility and the design and permitting for closure of three on-site landfills. Other project highlights include engineering for 10,000 feet of roadway reconstruction on campus (including State highway and intersections), parking for 1,200 vehicles, 13,000 feet of stormwater drainage lines, and evaluation and planning for additional site utilities. The wastewater disposal system we designed is one of the largest subsurface disposal systems in Maine with 10,000 feet of wastewater pipelines leading to four engineered wastewater systems that can treat 36,000 gallons per day.

SME provided construction services for campus redevelopment projects and continues to serve as the campus environmental consultant.