WATERVILLE — Camden National Bank announced Tuesday it will sell its building at 33 Main St. downtown in June to Colby College and will move in early fall onto the ground floor of the new $25.5 million mixed-use residential complex Colby is building down the street at 150 Main St.

Meanwhile, Colby officials said the college plans to demolish the current Camden building and build an already-planned boutique hotel on both that lot and the adjacent former Levine’s clothing store lot, where Colby initially had planned to build the hotel.

The bank issued a news release Tuesday that says it has signed a purchase and sale agreement with Elm City 9, LLC, an affiliate of Colby.

Camden is the first business to announce it will move into Colby’s mixed-use building, which is 103,000 square feet in size and will be named the Bill and Joan Alfond Main Street Commons. The under-construction building — the most visible cornerstone of a revitalization effort that involves millions of dollars of investment downtown — will house 200 Colby students and faculty and staff members on its upper floors and have a glassed-in community space on the northeast corner of the ground floor.

The 3,500 square-foot banking center will be on the corner of Main and Temple streets and serve as a one-stop shop for all financial needs, according to the release.

“We are very committed to the Waterville region and appreciate the opportunity to serve our customers and the community with a new, modern location,” said Greg Dufour, Camden’s president and chief executive officer. “As a fellow neighbor in downtown Waterville, we feel this is an exciting next step for the entire community and we value the investment Colby College and the Alfonds have made to the community.”


Brian Clark, Colby’s vice president of planning, said the college is pleased Camden will continue to be a vital presence in downtown Waterville.

“And, importantly, a hotel was identified early on as a key project to bring visitors and new activity to Main Street, and this agreement allows Colby to resume plans for the hotel on a new site that offers the best opportunity for success,” Clark said in the release.

The property closing is expected to occur in June. The current bank will remain open at 33 Main St. until it is ready to move to 150 Main St. in early fall, officials said.

Camden National has planned for a seamless transition to its future location and customers will not experience any interruption in service when the move occurs, according to the release.

Asked when Colby hopes to open the hotel, Clark responded via email Tuesday that Colby is entering the early planning phases now and once the design is complete, it expects to move quickly on construction.

Renee Smyth, executive vice president and chief experience and marketing officer for Camden, said in an email Tuesday that there is ample parking space behind the Bill and Joan Alfond Commons for bank customers and there is additional street parking.


The current Camden building, built in 1920, is 40,000 square feet in size, but the bank uses only 8,000 square feet of it. The bank bought the building in 2012 from Bank of America, according to Smyth.

According to the Waterville assessor’s database, the parcel the bank occupies is 0.67 acre, the back side of the property at 11-13 Front St. is 0.61 acre, and the 9 Main St., the former Levine’s property, is 0.27 acre.

The question of parking for the proposed hotel has long been debated, with councilors voting last year to approve leasing 30 spaces on the west side of the 60-space public parking lot on Front Street exclusively to Colby.

Clark said Colby generally plans to use parking spaces in the Front Street parking lot that the college has leased from the city and will identify other ways to manage hotel parking. Asked if there is a chance the hotel will be built with parking spaces under it, Clark said, “That’s not a possibility we are currently considering.”

The agreement with Camden has allowed Colby to restart the planning process for a high-end hotel that will take full advantage of the new site, Clark said.

“Camden’s move is currently planned for early fall, and the agreement allows the bank to remain in 33 Main St. until it is ready to move into 150 Main,” he said.


The hotel site with additional property, according to Clark, is about ensuring a hotel downtown that achieves the goals identified through the planning process and the revitalization strategy adopted by the City Council.

“Having visitors staying in downtown Waterville will benefit local retailers and restaurants and will contribute to the vibrancy of the street,” Clark said.

While the Camden bank building looks relatively intact on the Main Street side, the reality of the building is more complicated, according to Clark.

“Only a fraction of the building’s 40,000 square feet (is) currently occupied and much of the remainder of the building is not up to code,” he said. “It does not make financial sense to rehabilitate the building, and the best option at this time seems to be construct a new building on that site.”

Clark said 4,000 square feet of space is still available on the ground floor of the residential complex at 150 Main St., and Colby is having productive discussions with several additional prospective retail tenants.

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

Twitter: @AmyCalder17

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