Marshall states it has finalized purchase of Metacomet Golf Club

Controversial matter moves to next step

By Mike Rego
Posted 10/2/20

EAST PROVIDENCE — Marshall Development released a statement through its public relations firm mid-morning Friday, Oct. 2, declaring it has completed the purchase of Metacomet Golf Club.

The …

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Marshall states it has finalized purchase of Metacomet Golf Club

Controversial matter moves to next step

Posted

EAST PROVIDENCE — Marshall Development released a statement through its public relations firm mid-morning Friday, Oct. 2, declaring it has completed the purchase of Metacomet Golf Club.

The move was expected, following Marshall's announcement a week earlier it had withdrawn its rezoning and comprehensive plan amendment petitions from consideration by the City Council and would seek to redevelop the 138-acre parcel through existing ordinances.

(Updated, 1 p.m., October 2) The press release issued did not include details of the purchase, such as the price Marshall paid for the land. However, according to sources with knowledge of the matter the developer paid the previous owner, the Metacomet Property Company, $7.6 million.

At the time of its purchase, the Metacomet Property Company, which only bought the club from members in 2019, was composed of Rhode Island native and PGA Tour veteran Brad Faxon, former Wannamoisett Country Club head professional Steve Napoli, Tim Fay, Brendan VanDeventer and Karl Augenstein. The company reportedly bought the club for around $2.2 million total, including some $1.5 million in debt.

The Metacomet grounds, including the clubhouse and outbuildings, were last appraised for the city in 2019 at $3,989,900 with the land by itself valued at $2,021,200.

More recently, Marshall offered two visions for the tract, one (Concept A as pictured) with mixed uses, significant buffering of the property and with a large area near the Watchemoket Cove it would maintain as publicly accessed green space. The other (Concept B as pictured) was a much more sterile, likely largely commercially based with only minimal buffering currently required.

Both plans faced staunch opposition from neighbors and residents throughout the city. And if its petitions had reached a vote, at least three members of the five-person council said they would have been opposed to the changes.

Friday's statement reads as follows:

"Marshall Development is pleased to announce today that they have successfully closed on the Metacomet property and have taken ownership of the 138-acre parcel from the previous owners.

"Prior to the closing, the previous ownership group permanently closed the golf course and club, effective September 30th

"As many are aware, the club’s operations struggled financially, including having experienced years of unpaid property taxes to the city. In attempting to balance the unsustainability of the golf course, the fiscal health of the city, providing amenities to residents, and private property owner rights, the Marshalls came up with a plan and attempted to have constructive dialogue with the community to reach such a balance.   

"Specifically, Marshall Development put forth a concept that would have created a park-like setting on over 50% of the property at zero acquisition cost to taxpayers, with the developed portion generating countless jobs, an estimated $8 - $10 million dollars in property tax revenue for the city, in addition to many other direct and indirect benefits.

"While disappointed that such a dialogue did not materialize, Marshall Development remains pleased to have another project in East Providence and looks forward to developing the property under the current zoning ordinance."

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