Woodlawn Receives $4 Million Matching Grant for Multi-Purpose Facility

Woodlawn is pleased to announce that it has received a $4 million matching grant from a private foundation and other donors to support its Campaign for Woodlawn, a fundraising effort to fund a multi-purpose facility on the 180 acre estate.  The building project will provide spaces for Woodlawn’s educational and recreational programs, visitor services, event, exhibition and organizational support spaces. It will also provide the community with needed space for gatherings, meetings and functions.

The Hancock County Trustees of Public Reservations, Woodlawn’s governing board, has worked closely over the past two years with Oudens Ello Architecture and ConsultEcon, an economic and management consulting firm, to map out a long term vision and create a Master Plan for Woodlawn. The Master Plan, funded by a private foundation, has in its first phase three elements:  the re-establishment of the estate’s carriage barn, the renovation of the Ell attached to the historic house, and conversion of the Sleigh Barn into a visitor center.  These elements combined will solve Woodlawn’s pressing space needs, create new revenue opportunities and satisfy a community need. 

The Trustee’s goal in the development of the Master Plan was to create a space that both preserves Woodlawn’s heritage and ensures its future.  While the plan and design are not yet finalized, visitors can rest assured that when coming onto the property they will see a carriage barn that is a replica of the existing façade. The old barn will be carefully deconstructed and original materials that are still structurally sound will be reincorporated into the new structure. The added space will replicate the footprint of the original barn, which in early photographs show it extending off the end of the current structure towards where the walking trails begin.

According to Woodlawn’s executive director, Joshua Torrance, “The estimated total price for the project is $8.2 million, however that is not to say we are building an $8 million barn.”  Torrance explains the total figure includes the cost of building construction, site work and renovations of existing structures as well as soft costs that include design work, permitting, and contingencies. It also includes a significant endowment. “This grant, matching every donation dollar for dollar up to $4 million is thrilling for us.  It allows us to move forward on this exciting project after several years of strategic planning and assessment.  It’s going to be great for Woodlawn and transformative for Ellsworth.”   

Donations to the Campaign for Woodlawn can be sent to Woodlawn, PO Box 1478, Ellsworth ME, 04605.  Gifts are tax deductible as Woodlawn is governed by the Hancock County Trustees of Public Reservations, a 501(c)(3).