MOUNT DESERT — Beautification of the marina area in Northeast Harbor is a high priority for the Garden Club of Mount Desert and has the support of the Summer Residents Association.
Both organizations have pledged $10,000. The garden club would like the town to chip in at least that much and to assume responsibility for ongoing maintenance.
“We propose to start planting around the [harbormaster] and visitor center buildings, a low-maintenance plan to see how it is received, and then expand the plantings behind the buildings and beside the tennis courts,” Ellie Andrews, co-chairman of civic projects for the garden club, told the board of selectmen last week.
“Then perhaps we will expand from there, depending on the financial situation. This will be done slowly and carefully.”
Andrews said the beautification project would enhance the ongoing effort to revitalize Northeast Harbor.
“It will attract boaters, tourists and local townspeople and overall give everyone a much better visitor experience,” she said.
Ann Judd, the garden club’s other co-chairman for civic projects, said Ted Williams of Williams Irrigation Systems in Ellsworth “has basically donated irrigation to be installed around the area. That’s a value of probably $5,000 or $6,000.”
Andrews said the garden club would like to get started with the beautification project this fall. But Town Manager Durlin Lunt pointed out that certain gifts to the town, “including such things as an irrigation system,” must be approved by voters at town meeting. The annual town meeting is in May.
“What you need to do,” Lunt told the selectmen, “is work with the garden club to decide the scale [of the project] and what contribution the community wants to make to go along with others. Then we can draft a warrant article [for town meeting].”
Public Works Director Tony Smith said that, before an irrigation system is installed, “You probably should give some consideration to the fact that the Village Green is settling over time. It’s all fill.”