A couple plans to develop a small campground and recreational facility for private events on their 31-acre property near Orffs Corner in Waldoboro.
The Waldoboro Planning Board heard from the couple, Alaina Bailey and Michael Curley, during a preapplication meeting Wednesday, May 13.
Bailey and Curley plan to open the business in phases, Curley said. The property is at 51 Orffs Corner Road.
“It would be for private events with a limited number of people – four, five, or six events per year,” Curley said.
Curley said the campground would include a common area with a field and wooded areas for camping. The campground would host events such as yoga retreats, with a structure available for classes.
The couple also plans to build a personal residence on the property with a gravel driveway running about 900 feet from the road to the house.
In the future, Curley said he and Bailey are interested in adding hot tubs and saunas for campers to rent for an evening.
“We’d start with one community, large hot tub and one sauna and add more after that,” Curley said.
Board member John Kosnow asked if the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted their business plans.
Curley said the development of the property is going to take a few years to complete.
“We’re thinking about five years for everything. We are trying to do camping next year and focus on getting the property ready for that this year,” Curley said.
Board member Barbara Boardman asked about the proposal’s impact on a snowmobile trail that crosses the property.
Curley said camping would not take place in that portion of the property and the campground would not be open in the winter.
Boardman asked if they plan to clear any of the land.
Curley said they plan to clear about 3 acres of trees. “We want to open it up for field camping and put a communal fire pit in,” Curley said.
Bailey said they will leave other trees up for screening and will leave the property’s apple trees in place.
Max Johnstone, a planning consultant to the town, said Curley and Bailey can contact the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry to ensure they do not remove trees in a restricted area, such as a vernal pool or wetland.
Bailey asked about potential zoning issues on the property.
Johnstone said the back end of the property is in the shoreland zone, as it abuts a stream that runs into the Medomak River. Most of the property is in the town’s rural district.
Johnstone said he would look at Federal Emergency Management Agency maps to determine if portions of the property are in the 100-year floodplain. The town’s land use ordinance does not permit campsites on the floodplain.
Curley described the property as part of a seven-year retirement plan and said the couple intends to finish building the house in five years. He said the first phase will be camping, with the second phase focusing on the house and the hot tub and sauna facilities.
Boardman said that in a future meeting, the board will want to hear about abutter issues, plans for trash removal, and protection of waterways.
Board Chair Scott Simpson said the board will also consider the number of campers they plan to host and will need information on any floodplain or wetland impacts.