Bucksport has shut down the Fountain Inn on Route 1 citing the property's poor condition and safety concerns for the people who were living long-term in the former motel. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik

A prospective buyer for a prominent yet beleaguered Bucksport motel has emerged, though their identity and future plans haven’t been publicly announced.

The vacant Fountain Inn on Route 1 went under contract late last month, according to the town and the seller’s website. But details on who is planning to purchase the motel, which was shut down by Bucksport officials in 2021 because of numerous safety violations, are scant.

Town Manager Susan Lessard said she could not provide the name of the prospective buyer because the sale is not final and the property is not owned by the town.

Code Enforcement Officer Luke Chiavelli said that the new buyer has already put boards up in windows of the motel, which has been in rough shape since its closure, and locked all the doors. But he also said he couldn’t disclose the name of the new potential owner.

Jake Yeaton, the realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices that listed the inn at $1 million, did not respond to requests for comment this week.  

In April, Yeaton said there were four serious potential buyers who were okay with the town’s long list of items that would need to be brought up to code at the 9-acre, 18,000 square foot property.

At the time, three said they were interested in using the property as a motel and one was inquiring about the potential for employee housing.

Town officials deemed the motel “dangerous” last year after inspections found there was a broken central heating system, electrical problems, substandard smoke detectors and inadequate plumbing.

Contractors from southern Maine hired by the current owner Asad Khaqan came to Bucksport about a month ago and filled dumpsters with trash from the motel. But no other work on the two buildings at the site, which were also up for sale as individual plots, has been done since, Chiavelli said.

Whoever does buy the property will need to do extensive wiring, plumbing and heating work at the motel in order to remove the “dangerous” building designation and make it usable again. They would also need to perform several structural repairs, add new fire alarms and install sheetrock.

Late last month, Lessard told the town council that Buckspot was looking into ways to recover the cost of enforcing the dangerous building order. Khaqan has appealed the order in Hancock County Superior Court. Court staff said Friday that the case is still pending.