The Market Basket in Westbrook opened in August 2020. The grocery store chain plans to open a location in Topsham. Gregory Rec / Portland Press Herald file photo

After a year of consideration, the Topsham Planning Board approved a site plan for a Market Basket grocery store after meeting with project engineers and peer reviewers last Thursday.

The applicant, Massachusetts-based firm Topsco, first proposed building the 80,000-square-foot grocery store by presenting its original sketch plan to the board in November 2021.

Set to be built at 169 Topsham Fair Mall Road, the new supermarket will sit within 5 miles of two Hannaford stores, a Shaw’s and a Target that also sells groceries.

Market Basket operates 86 stores across Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Maine. Topsham will be the third location in Maine, following the Biddeford location that opened in 2013 and the Westbrook location that opened in 2020.

“This is just a fantastic location for a Market Basket,” said real estate developer John Matthews in a news release. “It will add a much-needed supermarket option to a well-established regional shopping destination at the convergence of high-capacity roadways. Market Basket has proven to be tremendously popular in Maine, and they are very interested in the opportunity to further serve the residents of the state.”

Over the past year, Topsco has been working with traffic engineer Thomas Errico of T.Y. Lin International and the Maine Department of Transportation to obtain a movement permit.


Errico said the applicant will be expected to pay $303,000 toward new traffic signs, speed tables and raised crosswalks as well as the reconstruction of the I-295 southbound exit ramp to eastbound Route 196.

“I think we are close — I don’t see any issues in getting a final permit,” Errico said.

The Planning Board approved the project under the condition Topsco obtain a peer review of its lighting plan for the parking lot and its landscaping plan, promising not to clear-cut trees.

According to Topsham Assistant Planner Kate Burch, residents have called the Town Office excited about the new grocery store. She said they are looking forward to having “more grocery options in the Midcoast area.”

Burch said she believes the new store will positively impact other businesses, with increased traffic flow through the Topsham Fair Mall area.

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