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Casco Systems moves into custom-built Cumberland headquarters

BY Laurie Schreiber

1/14/2019
Courtesy / Grun Development LLC
Courtesy / Grun Development LLC
Casco Systems moved into its new headquarters, at 1 Faraday Drive (formerly 197 Gray Road) in Cumberland, in mid-December.

Casco Systems LLC moved into its new headquarters, at 1 Faraday Drive off Route 100 in Cumberland, after it finalized the purchase of the property from Grun Development LLC for $3,647,531.
Michael Anderson, representing the seller, and Mark Malone, representing the buyer, both of Malone Commercial Brokers, brokered the transaction, which closed Nov. 14.
The building is the first phase of a three-phase mixed-use project by Grun Development. The second phase, 20 townhouse units, is starting. A third phase, in the planning stage, will be a commercial building.
“The process was fairly unique in the sense that it was a custom-built building,” said Anderson. “It’s good when you see new construction happening in the secondary and tertiary markets, in addition to what is happening in some of the primary markets such as Portland for example.”
The price, Anderson added, “wasn’t cheap, but it provides for a custom facility for Casco Systems and the first phase of a multi-phase development at this location in Cumberland.”
Casco Systems President Kevin Mahoney said his company moved to its new headquarters in mid-December. Last July, Casco Systems sold its previous headquarters, at 160 Longwoods Road in Cumberland, but held a leaseback until it could move into its new Faraday Drive building, which was then under construction. The property previously had an address of 197 Gray Road.
The previous 160 Longwoods Road building is only 4,400 square feet, compared with the new headquarters’ 20,376 square feet.
The new headquarters reflects the company's growth, Mahoney told Mainebiz last July.
The one-story building includes expanded laboratory space for research and development of advanced automation, control and protection systems for the industrial and electric power industry, dedicated server room, a large training room, offices, conference rooms, lounge and fitness center. A large shop space will make it possible to stage control systems for testing before deployment to the field.

Casco Systems is an engineering and system integration firm headquartered in Cumberland, with offices in Waterville, as well as Rochester, N.Y. It performs work for electric utility, power generation and industrial automation clients throughout North America, with a special focus on the Northeast. Mahoney started the company in 2001.
Mahoney said the company is expanding into industrial automation more aggressively.
“Previously, we focused our marketing efforts exclusively on the power generation and transmission markets,” he said. “We’re now expanding into industrial control and machine automation. For example, think of an industrial manufacturing facility. They have machines and processes that need to be automated and monitored. We provide the system integration expertise to control their equipment. It’s something we’ve always done, and our staff is very experienced, but now it’s a business development focus.”
The company employs 37 full-time engineers, technical specialists, project managers and business professionals. Mahoney expects to hire more.
“Finding qualified, experienced people is the single biggest challenge we face,” he said. “So, we’re always looking to recruit and to hire as well as train and develop our current team.”
To bolster the hiring pool, Casco Systems has developed a range of partnerships with local companies active in the industrial and utility space, with vendors, and with academic institutions, including Southern Maine Community College and the Electrical Engineering Technology Department at the University of Maine.

Of the 20,000 square feet, Casco’s staff will occupy approximately 12,000 square feet, he said.
“The balance is going to be used as co-working space and another 1,750 square foot section will be leased to a tenant,” he explained. A tenant has not yet been identified.
He said the co-working space wasn't part of the original plan.
“We had people come through the building who were impressed with the facility its layout and workspace,” he said. “We had multiple comments from folks who said, ‘I wish I could have an office here.’ That led us to using part of the space as a co-working center until we grow into needing it ourselves.” He said prospective tenants and co-workers may email info@casco-systems.com

The Casco Systems building was part of a three-phase development by Grun Development LLC of Portland. In 2015, Grun Development bought 193-197 Gray Road with the idea of developing it for multiple uses, said Migs Eaton, who founded Grun Development as well as Green Sip Construction Inc., which constructed the Casco Systems building.
Eaton said construction has begun on the second phase of development, Mill Run Townhouses, which will consist of 20 residential condominium units.
According to the website that’s advertising the development, the units will feature energy-efficient designs built with green technology, natural gas heating and oversized windows for light and warmth; and open-concept homes with amenities like granite counter tops, cathedral ceilings, lots of storage, hardwood and tile floors, and attached parking for one or two cars.
Each unit will have two bedrooms. They’ll range from 1,400 square feet to 1,800 square feet in size and from $269,000 to $289,000 in price, she said.
The townhouse development has received considerable interest, Eaton said.
“I’ve been having one to two inquiries every day,” she said.
A third phase of development, a commercial building, is in the planning stage, she said.