Town set to sell one of its new Marieville properties to Housing Authority

Town set to sell one of its new Marieville properties to Housing Authority

NORTH PROVIDENCE – The town is preparing to sell the first in a series of 20 properties purchased over the summer from National Grid to the North Providence Housing Authority.

The property abutting the Housing Authority’s existing property, a vacant parcel on Charles Street between the organization’s driveway and Carovilli Street, measures about 18,000 square feet.

Mayor Charles Lombardi said this is one of about 10 or so full-sized buildable lots obtained through the $200,000 purchase with National Grid and the only one so far that’s in the process of being sold.

“We need to decide how we’re going to merchandise them,” he said.

An additional 10 or so Grid lots are smaller and mostly abutting residential property owners, he said. Those are being offered to abutters, and if sold, would be added to their existing properties for increased tax value and more revenue to the town.

One of the Marieville properties is targeted for a new playground, another for possible recreation space and an athletic field, and yet another as possible compensation to builder Sathuan Sa for the town’s botching of the approval process for an ill-fated home on an undersized lot on North Elmore Avenue.

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When all is said and done with the 20 Marieville properties, said Lombardi, the town will have a new playground, more open space, and enhanced existing residential properties, “all at no cost to the taxpayers. If anything, they might realize some additional revenue.”

The mayor said he initially approached the Housing Authority about the Charles Street property, saying he told leadership that his business sense would dictate that one should buy the property abutting one’s own. Executive Director William Malloy then took it to his board and the town commissioned an appraisal determining that the property is worth about $92,000.

Lombardi said he wanted to be fair, and since this was the Housing Authority, he offered the property for $75,000, which the board is now considering.

The property gives the Housing Authority options, said Lombardi, including potential to acquire funds to add more units and develop new administrative offices if desired.

“At least now they own it. No one can build anything next to them and encroach on them,” he said.

Lombardi said he only wants fair market value for any of the available properties.

“That’s what we’re going to do with everyone else,” he said of the reasonable approach taken with the Housing Authority.

If the town really wanted to maximize its dollars in a return for the properties it purchased, it could carve out an additional four or five buildable lots on another Marieville parcel right near the Providence line, said Lombardi, “but I don’t think it’s the right thing to do.” He said he thinks that parcel should be kept as open park space and a possible ballfield for residents to enjoy.