Public to weigh in on Navy land on Aquidneck Island

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – There's a public hearing Thursday night on what to do with the hundreds of acres the Navy is letting go of on Aquidneck Island.

The 225 acres of land include the historic Navy Hospital in Newport, the former Navy Lodge in Middletown, and a pair of large tracts in Portsmouth. And then there are Stringham Road and a stretch of Defense Highway that run through Middletown and Portsmouth.

All three municipalities have submitted bids for the land, mostly for parks. So has the Rhode Island Department of Transportation for the pair of roads. Also, an energy company has put in a bid for 96 acres in Portsmouth.

Federal law gives local governments the authority to develop surplus military property. But it also gives homeless services first consideration unless there isn't a homeless problem or a more pressing local need.

The panel overseeing redevelopment will submit a plan to the Defense Department and Department of Housing and Urban Development in August.

Want To Go?
Aquidneck Island Reuse Planning Authority Public Meeting
Thursday, February 10th 6:00 - 9:00pm
Middletown Town Hall
350 East Main Road
Middletown, RI

More information on the Aquidneck Island Reuse Planning Authority here.

More information on the land's environmental condition here.

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