Block Island police brace for upcoming demolition of Harborside Inn

NEW SHOREHAM, R.I. (WLNE) — Block Island’s police chief John Lynch said Monday that they are preparing for the demolition of the Harborside Inn and neighboring businesses in two weeks.

On August 18th, the historic building went up in flames. Downtown and the ferry to the island were shut down temporarily. No one was injured.

“Some of us were up for 36 hours,” said Lynch. “Everyone was stressed but everyone comes together here.”

This is Lynch’s first summer as the island’s police chief.

He added, “Preliminary plan is that Water Street will remain open. There is enough area in the rear of the property that protects it. There is enough space to contain the demolition. ”

Governor Dan McKee announced that a disaster declaration for affected businesses and residents will be in place.

Chief Lynch told ABC 6 Monday, “I think there was 19 businesses that are out of business or had to relocate.”

He finished, “They’re hoping to rebuild it in a similar fashion looking like it used to be… A lot of people were saddened by it. A lot were impacted. It’s one of the first things you can see when you get off the ferry.”

Lynch and his department anticipate the demolition will remain isolated and will not impact local traffic.

Categories: News, Rhode Island