LEWISTON, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- At 158 years old, the Bates Mill is full of history. But this week, it is also making history, becoming the first Lewiston mill building to transition into a residential building.
The Lofts at Bates Mill opened this week, and already 32 of the 48 units have been rented.
Old textile mill artificats line the corridors that have the original columns from the historic building still standing.
Inside, each unit has one or two bedrooms, a kitchen, and bathroom, with tall windows and high ceilings that have the original beams and floor boards in place.
"We wanted to keep that to show the character of the mill," said developer Nathan Szanton, from the Szanton Company.
He said the look and location are ideal for downtown development, brining housing to an already growing business district.
New tenant Larry Gilbert said the Lofts at Bates Mill may be in an old building, but offer a new option for housing.
"It's kind of urban living, and I don't think Lewiston Auburn has had a lot of that," said Gilbert.
"With the growth of the bars and restaurants in the area...I think it will only increase business at those places among our demographic," he said.
The apartments are "mixed-income" apartments, meaning there are units availbale at market price and lower rates based on income.
For rates and renting information, click here.