BRUNSWICK — Town Council is set to decide on Monday whether a section of Pine Street will be discontinued in order to facilitate construction of a new building for Bowdoin College.

The proposal initially came before the council in early November, and would discontinue a section of Pine Street between its intersection with Bath Road and Bowker Street. The proposal by the college was created after neighbors on Bowker Street said they’d prefer to have a planned 9,000-square-foot athletic facility located further away from the neighborhood.

The most cost effective way to do so, according to the college, is to discontinue Pine Street and build the building on land currently occupied by the roadway. The college currently owns property on both sides of the street, and originally granted rights to the town in order to create Pine Street.

“Through the meetings we had with the neighbors, it became very clear that there was a strong preference that any development happen on the other (Pine Street) side of the field,” said Bowdoin’s Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer Matt Orlando during the initial presentation. “That really is the ideal site for this 9,000-square-foot facility.”

As part of the proposal, a new street would be built that connects parts of Pine Street to Bath Road, with the college incurring all costs related to the construction. In addition, the college would grant an easement to the Pine Street Cemetery so plots could still be accessed, and maintain a bike and pedestrian path running along Pine Street’s current location.

At a public hearing on Nov. 20, many residents of the neighborhood said they were opposed to the idea of constructing the new street out of fears that the area would become a pass-through for people trying to bypass the traffic light at the intersection of Bath Road and Sills Drive.

“What I have a problem with is giving up the aesthetic ambiance of Pine Street,” said Richard Hartford, who lives on nearby McLellan Street.

Concerns were raised about families with small children in the area, the narrow nature of the streets, and the impact that increased traffic might have on the neighborhood.

Residents also objected to the findings of two separate traffic studies analyzing the plan. While both traffic studies – one by Bowdoin College and an independent one by the town – found that traffic would not increase significantly, residents weren’t buying it.

Many also feared that regardless of their input or feelings, Bowdoin College would get its way.

“There’s nobody else in this town, or any business, that would be allowed to take a street back. It’s not going to happen,” said James Minott.

Brunswick has voted to discontinue streets in the past, including during the construction of the Harriet Beecher Stowe school.

If the council decides to discontinue Pine Street, no action will be taken by the college on Pine Street until the new access road is completed.

For more information, visit Brunswick’s website.