What Will Downtown Gardiner Look Like in 10 years?


Springing from the Heart and Soul Process, this Plan took an in-depth look at ways to improve and revitalize “The Heart of Gardiner” – its downtown.

Commerce, events, history, and people came together in the historic streets and buildings sitting above the confluence of the Kennebec River and Cobbossee Stream. This master plan effort, spearheaded by the City of Gardiner, Gardiner Main Street, and a host of community advocates, gathered community input and site conditions and built a master plan that can guide our downtown towards a more resilient and vibrant future.- Heart of Gardiner Downtown Master Plan 

View The 10-Year Plan

Adopted December 1, 2021 by the City of Gardiner

A public survey was launched April 2021, and collected public feedback through the following June.

During this two month window, the survey was available physically at City Hall and the Gardiner Library as well as digitally. The survey was advertised through physical posting of flyers in downtown shop merchant windows, on social media, email newsletters and the city’s list-serve. Postcards were left at several locations downtown to share the survey and the visioning session information. In addition, the City of Gardiner and Gardiner Main Street organizations relied heavily on their combined social media and web presence to promote awareness of the planning process and the opportunities for direct community input. In addition, several articles in the Kennebec Journal documented these opportunities. The survey was designed to gain a broad understanding of business owners, visitors, and residents perceptions of Downtown’s physical, functional, and economic qualities.

View survey Results


The existing market conditions for Gardiner are complex.

The City is part of a Micropolitan Statistical area (which is comprised of all Kennebec County communities). Each of these individual economies act upon one another to create a complex and dynamic system. That system affects Gardiner most directly through its neighbors. Any examination of Gardiner’s downtown that does not also reflect on its proximity to neighboring communities downtowns would not adequately portray the opportunities for downtown Gardiner. This plan examines a drive time analysis from downtown Gardiner to other downtowns nearby. Five, ten, and fifteen minute drive times were examined to explore the dynamics of the region. These drive times give insight into local and regional population trends, demographics, and shopping patterns. A community identity is a key component of how a community tells its story to itself and the outside world.

View Market Analysis


The City of Gardiner has worked with key boards, committees, and non-profit partners to develop a unified approach to telling Gardiner’s story.

View Municipal Interviews


Everyone comes downtown to experience the history, the culture, the events, and the vibrancy. But when you drive here, where do you park?

There is real concern about future parking in Downtown Gardiner. Addressing these concerns requires creative partnerships and reuse of existing private parking lots, so that the need for parking access is balanced with the monetary and environmental cost of parking lots.

View Parking– sample agreement