B. EXISTING LAND USES
Development in Sebago is dominated by single-family residential structures. Slightly over half of the residential units in town are seasonal, although the relative proportion of year-round units is increasing. An examination of census data and building permit records through 1999 shows that two- family and multi-family units account for about 8 percent of the total number of housing units in town. Of eleven multi-family units, six were built in 1988: seventeen two-family units were constructed before 1980. Mobile homes comprise about 13 percent of the housing stock. Most of these are found on individual lots, rather than in mobile home parks.
About 20 percent of the town's area is in residential use: three-quarters of this is low density residential, with lot areas of greater than 120,000 square feet. About 6 percent of the residential area is in lots of less than 60,000 square feet: most of this is along Sebago Lake and the other lake shores.
The largest numbers of year-round residences are clustered in North Sebago and East Sebago; Douglas Mountain, Convene, Sebago Center, Hillside and Long Beach are other areas of residential concentration. Individual houses are found throughout town, primarily along main roads. Most of the units along Sebago Lake, Peabody Pond, and Barker Pond are seasonal; most year-round housing is found away from lake frontage.
Since 1991 there has been an increase in conversion of seasonal homes to year-round dwellings. During the 1991-1999 period, 99 permits for new dwellings were issues. These new dwellings were located throughout town. Only about 6% were built near the Sebago Lake waterfront. Twelve percent were on Assessors Map 11 (along Route 107 and Folly Road); the remainder was distributed fairly evenly across the town.
There is little commercial development in Sebago; less than one percent of the town's area is in commercial use. Most businesses are located in East Sebago, North Sebago and Long Beach. Commercial activities tend to be related to tourism: marinas, cottages, restaurants, small variety stores, and summer camps. Others include construction, repair, and service businesses; many of these are "home occupations", operating out of residences.
The community would like to see any future commercial growth occur in areas currently in commercial use, according to the 2000 survey of residents. They also would like future businesses to be small-scale, retail and service concerns, with 75% of respondents opposing large-scale commercial developments, 76% disliking car dealerships, and 90% opposing automobile junkyards. These numbers represent a significant increase from the previous survey.
There currently is no industrial activity in Sebago. A sawmill operation was located near the Northwest River in East Sebago, but was abandoned. Sebago is an unlikely site for most future industrial development. Its isolation from air and rail service, major arterial roads, and support services required by industry; the lack of public water and sewer systems; and the scarcity of flat land are disincentives to industrial location. In addition, the community does not support industrial development in Sebago: 68% of 2000 survey respondents felt the town should discourage industrial parks; 58% disapproved of manufacturing; and 40% did not want high-tech enterprises.
Public-Owned Land and Buildings
Town-owned buildings include the old Town Hall (now used primarily for recreational and social functions), the recently (2000) renovated Potter Academy which houses the new town offices, Town Garage, and Fire Station No.1 in Sebago Center; Fire Station No.2 and the Spaulding Memorial Library in East Sebago; and Fire Station No.3 in North Sebago. The Town also owns several lots on the Northwest River Bog, the Town Beach on the Northwest River, the Town transfer station off Mack's Corner Road, the Peabody Pond boat landing, and the old dump site. The Lake Region School District owns the Sebago Elementary School in East Sebago, and the State of Maine owns a parcel off the Denmark Road that provides access to Middle Pond in Hiram, and two smaller parcels. Land for a Town cemetery has been purchased off Route
107 and Hancock Pond Road, and is now in use. Table A-4 describes public owned land and buildings in Sebago.
Route 114, which links Naples and Standish, and Route 107 and Long Hill Road between Baldwin and Bridgton are the major roads in Sebago. Route 114 has seen a marked increase in commercial (i.e., large truck) traffic over the past ten years. Section C of this chapter gives a full description of the town's transportation routes and systems.
There is little commercial agriculture in Sebago. Crabtree’s Blueberries on Route 107 sells picked blueberries and also allows people to pick berries from the bushes. Mayberry’s Farm on Route 107 sells vegetables and flowers. Green Maple Farm at Mack's Corner sells maple syrup and sugar, and two orchards are located south of the Convene Road. Less than one percent of the town's area is in farmland. Commercial agriculture is a minor land use, and with the relative scarcity of prime agricultural land, will probably remain so. In addition to their economic functions, fields and orchards perform an important aesthetic function in Sebago, creating variety in a landscape dominated by forest.
As of 2000, 8147.3 acres of land in Sebago, approximately 35% of the town's area, are classified under the tree growth tax credit program. Over 2000 acres are owned by paper or lumber companies, and are actively managed for commercial forestry. A few acres are used to grow Christmas trees.
There are no significant mining activities in Sebago. Sand and gravel pits, generally used for local construction, are found in several locations, including north of Southeast Pond, off Peabody Pond Road near Hill Brook, and near the Northwest River in East Sebago.
Large Undeveloped Tracts of Land
Development in Sebago is concentrated near Sebago Lake and along the other lake shores, and along main roads. The remainder of the town is largely undeveloped and undivided, with parcels of a hundred acres or more being common; many of these are currently in tree growth. The largest undeveloped blocks of land that are not in the tree growth program are found between Long Hill Road and Sandy Beach Road, and in the Hillside area.