Portland Public Market Transformed and Reopens as State-of-the-Art Corporate Headquarters
PowerPay keeps 150 jobs in Portland with plans of workforce expansion.
PORTLAND, ME – May 20, 2010 – PowerPay CEO Stephen Goodrich announced today that PowerPay has moved its headquarters to the newly renovated Portland Public Market. Goodrich was joined by Portland Mayor Nicholas Mavodones, project partner, Charlie Spies of CEI Capital Management, along with other local officials to discuss the economically collaborative project and get the first public glimpse of the local landmark.
“When we purchased the Public Market,” said Goodrich, “it was our goal to create a quality, progressive work environment for PowerPay employees. It was also very important to keep our 150 employees in Portland.”
With the continued growth of PowerPay, a payments services company, Goodrich knew the company had outgrown its former location on Fore Street. An Inc. 500 Fast Growth selection in 2008, PowerPay plans to expand its workforce in the next two years by adding up to 70 professional jobs.
“PowerPay will bring new life and activity to a vital neighborhood,” said Mayor Mavodones. “Bayside and its neighboring businesses will benefit from the activity and vibrancy of PowerPay's employees as they become a part of the fabric of the neighborhood.”
Goodrich noted it was a unique challenge to revitalize a once single-purpose building that had been shuttered for nearly three years—acknowledging that without the support of the city and collaborators like CEI Capital Management, it would have been near impossible to transform the Public Market into a viable, multi-purpose space useful for generations.
Through its use of New Market Tax Credits (NMTC), PowerPay partnered with CEI Capital Management to fund and administer a Community Workforce Training Program. $200,000 in funds is allocated to this joint effort. The seven year program targets out of work or dislocated workers, TANF recipients, and refugees. PowerPay committed to hiring 15% of its new employees from this workforce training program.
“This project is heads and shoulders above a traditional building renovation,” said Charlie Spies, managing director of CEI Capital Management. “PowerPay worked extremely well with CEI to make this a community project and not simply a private sector office development. It will deliver social and economic dividends to Portland for years to come.”
Goodrich acknowledged that his project, in concert with others, will provide a bridge between downtown Portland and the Bayside neighborhood.
After nearly a year of construction, the original post and beam structure was carefully preserved and “green” elements, consistent with modern, sustainable construction, were added. The project is on track to qualify as one of the only Gold LEED certified redevelopment projects in the U.S. of this size and scope. As a Gold LEED certified project, the building features sustainable and locally sourced building materials, a new highly-efficient HVAC system, renewable energy offsets, LED lighting, water conservation measures and dozens of other environmentally “green” features.
Goodrich hosted a tour of the building, guiding guests along the second-floor “floating mezzanine” that maintains an open design and natural lighting. He also pointed to an employee gym that overlooks a public café that will seat up to 80 patrons. The café will be open to the public, and, says Goodrich, is in keeping with Elizabeth Noyce's original vision when she developed the building as a public space for Portland residents to enjoy and share food.
The project team includes Wright Ryan construction, Winton Scott Architects, PeaksCo, Fore Solutions, and CEI. The project was financed through a mix of New Market Tax Credits, a city-generated Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Agreement, and local banks, Katahdin Trust Company and The First.
PowerPay is holding a Community Open House from 6:00p.m. until 8:00p.m. The event is open to the public and will provide an opportunity for the community to view the renovations. Prior to the Community Open House, Goodrich is hosting a fundraiser benefiting Preble Street Resource Center featuring noted Hitchcock actress,Tippi Hedren and famed defense attorney, F. Lee Bailey.
About the Portland Public Market
The Portland Public Market opened in 1998 at the bequest of philanthropist Elizabeth Noyce. At the time, it featured over two dozen vendors of fresh foods, flowers and upscale eateries. The building, architecturally distinctive as a vast post and beam structure, became an instant landmark. However, it was challenged by its location making it difficult to sustain foot traffic for its tenants. The public market closed in 2006 and has remained dormant since.
PowerPay was founded in 2003 with 6 employees. It is now a leading provider of credit card acceptance services nationally serving over 40,000 businesses nationwide. Inc. magazine ranked PowerPay one of the nation's 500 fastest growing private companies in 2008. For three consecutive years (2007, 2008, 2009) PowerPay was recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Maine by Best Places to Work Companies. PowerPay employs 150 people in Portland, Maine.
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