According to Saco Bay News, Maine real estate developer Tim Harrington has plans to transform Five Points Shopping Center in Biddeford into an entertainment complex by late spring of 2024.

The shopping center opened in 1973, and in its heyday was the home of retailers such as Rich's, Radio Shack, Fashion Bug, G.M. Pollack and Sons Jewelers, and a hometown Sears store. All those retailers have since gone out of business.

As with many shopping malls and plazas in Maine, Five Points has seen businesses pull out as their sales diminish, or they build their own stand-alone stores. Also, with the success of big national chains such as Walmart and Target and online retailers like Amazon, fewer people are shopping at individual stores.

An original proposal by Harrington was to turn Five Points Shopping Center into a mixed-use property with retail stores, apartments, and other buildings. That has now been replaced with a plan to create an entertainment center that could include pickleball, indoor golf, bowling, an arcade, laser tag, a ropes course, and food and drink.

Harrington told Saco Bay News that the complex would be called Play 5, which he compares to Apex Entertainment in Marlborough, Massachusetts.

Play 5 may have some of the same features as Apex Entertainment, but won't be a franchise of Apex.

How soon could we see Play 5 opening at Five Points? Since the Biddeford planning board has already declared these businesses as approved uses of the space, the turnaround could happen within a year if construction stays on schedule for a late spring opening in 2024.

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