A once-vacant Brewer building is now a startup hub that could be a model for Maine

A once-vacant Brewer building is now a startup hub that could be a model for Maine

When the ZF Lemforder auto parts plant in Brewer shut down in 2010, it took with it more than 100 jobs — a number that itself was down from its 1980s peak of about 400 employees.

But the cavernous, 126,000-square-foot building that housed the German company’s manufacturing operations has avoided the fate of many other Maine industrial properties that have seen their primary tenants close down or relocate and leave behind empty spaces.

Over the past decade, it’s become a hub for businesses that produce goods largely consumed outside of the Bangor region. They include a coffee roaster, a vodka distillery, a company that repurposes shipping containers and two companies that develop and manufacture composite materials.


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