October, 2016 – City of Portland Press Release

Work Begins on Fort Gorges on October 24

The City’s Parks, Recreation and Facilities Department will temporarily close Fort Gorges to public access on Monday, October 24, 2016 for a construction project (weather permitting). The Fort will re-open to the public again on the following day. As usual, when the fort is not closed, visitors may visit the historic structure and explore it at their own risk.

Work on the Hazard Mitigation project starts on Monday, October 24, 2016 with the repair of a stairway that leads to the second story roof of the Fort. After this initial smaller project is complete, the Army Corps of Engineers will commence with their portion of the hazard mitigation project in the spring of 2017 to install a series of railings and gates throughout the fort to increase safety for the many casual visitors to the Fort. Through making these repairs, the City hopes to bring the structure up to a standard where organized groups will be able to utilize the Fort for historical tours, musical and theater performances, and other public events.

The City and the Friends of Fort Gorges have partnered to reduce hazards at the Fort as well as create a Preservation Plan to ensure that the Fort remains a vital public space for generations to come. The restoration of this historic structure can be broken into roughly three phases: a Hazard Mitigation Phase, a Preservation Phase, and a Restoration and Improvement Phase.

The second phase, the Preservation Plan, consists of evaluation and strengthening the structure so that the fort will be a safer place to visit and remain open to the public for years to come. Funding for the Preservation Plan will be provided by the Maine Historic Preservation Commission, National Trust for Historic Preservation, and the Friends of Fort Gorges.

Following the completion of the Preservation Plan, the City of Portland and Friends of Fort Gorges will commence a more comprehensive Restoration and Improvement Phase that will involve public input on future uses and activities at the Fort, which will guide the direction of the restoration work and potential future amenities such as an improved pier, restored indoor spaces, and restrooms.Click here for full press release.