NARRAGANSETT, RI – The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management has said it aims to select one of four development proposals for the dilapidated Lighthouse Inn property in the Galilee by December 15.
Proposals submitted to the state, which would lease the land, include bids from current tenant PRI X and the Town of Narragansett.
The two have been at odds for over a year over the property, which locals have known for decades as the Dutch Inn.
PRI X, a partnership between the large real estate company Procaccianti Group and Paolino Properties, recently offered a small mixed-use commercial operations space, supported by a 500-space car park, as an on-site solution.
Officials and residents of Narragansett strongly opposed the idea, saying it did not conform to the history of the Galilee as a fishing port and hub for tourists coming and going to Block Island .
The city’s proposal would see the 5-acre site transformed into a 75- to 100-room boutique hotel with a restaurant, banquet hall, gallery, and parking lot. Additionally, there would be a ferry disembarkation area and an outdoor market directly across from the ferry terminal on Great Island Road.
The redevelopment program also includes plans for a 400-car parking lot attached to the hotel for long-term ferry parking, and a mixed-use building for offices and housing.
“Even with this ambitious redevelopment program, this plan still leaves about a third of the land available that could be used as open space, storage for marine uses, pickleball fields, festivals and / or future buildings,” the proposal said. Narragansett.
The document also estimates the development at $ 52.2 million and that the value of the structures would generate approximately $ 625,000 in property taxes, at current rates.
PRI X has a two-phase plan that proposes to demolish most, but not all, of the existing hotel and maintain the single-level front section that faces Great Island Road.
“This section would be extensively redeveloped with new roof lines, front façade and signage, all in the style of a typical New England fishing village,” PRI X said in its proposal. “This front section would then be broken up into separate footprints and marketed to local businesses, ideally as a space for cafes, breakfast and lunch outlets, convenience items, ice cream shops and users. similar ones that can make the most of the foot traffic generated by the Passengers Island Ferry block and parking lot.
The front parking area would be replaced with landscaping, park benches, historic shelves and more to increase retail offerings.
For Phase 2, PRI X would develop the Galilee Inn, a 20- to 40-room boutique hotel, based on a 99-year lease. PRI X argues that it needs a long-term lease to obtain financing. Additionally, the hotel’s first level should be more than 11 feet from the ground to account for flooding and climate change issues, the developer said.
PRI X’s current lease runs until January 31, 2022, and it has filed a notice to extend the lease until December 31, 2027. To complete phase I, PRI X said it would need an extension additional five years, thus bringing the current term to term. December 31, 2032.
PRI X estimates that the two phases are valued between 9 and 11 million dollars.
A third developer, Quonset Area Aqua Development Inc., in collaboration with iCell Aqua Inc., proposes to build a $ 30 million seafood processing facility and device to purify and recycle water. The land would still offer parking and a three-story office building is part of the plan.
To complement the proposals, Jon Williams of the Narragansett Crab Company presented a general vision for the site that benefits the fishing industry and the city rather than a single-use commercial facility. He envisions the plot as a hub or “fisherman’s terminal” for use by entities involved or affiliated with the fishing industry. His proposal did not include a projected value or price tag, timeline or other details, but rather was an argument to stimulate discussion if the other proposals fail, Williams said.
The Crown and PRI X issued a request for proposals on September 30 and the offers were received on November 15.
Proposed projects that support and complement the commercial fishing industry, local people and the town of Narragansett and the state will receive special attention, the state said.
The RFP, or RFP, stated that PRI is willing to cooperate with the selected respondent in a variety of ways “including a sublet with PRI, a partnership with PRI, a direct lease with RIDEM or some other structure.”
The timeline outlined in the RFP foresees final approval and execution by January 15, 2022. DEM and PRI X will have the final say on which proposal to accept.
The Lighthouse Inn closed in 2015 and has languished ever since.
The current use of the property, as set out in the lease between DEM and Galilee Hotel Associates dated October 16, 1990, is for the operation of a hotel and parking.
The hotel consisted of 100 rooms, a restaurant, a bar and a swimming pool. The owners of the hotel also operated the car park, which then had a capacity of around 300 vehicles.
PRI X closed the hotel but continued to operate the parking lot, which primarily serves as a parking lot for Block Island ferry passengers.
Since 2015 PRI X has submitted proposals to make the site a dedicated parking lot, a large restaurant and reception area, retail stores and a public park in combination with the use of the parking lot.