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Rye Officials Close to $5.6M Deal for Lester’s Building

The city faces a $600,000 loss on the property it bought seven years ago.

Rye Officials Close to $5.6M Deal for Lester’s Building

The City of Rye may get $5.6 million for the Lester’s building it bought for $6.2 million seven years ago, according to an agenda document for this Wednesday’s meeting. The city council will discuss selling the property to Bill Wolf Petroleum Corporation, a gas station company, at its Feb. 27 council meeting, according to the agenda and a drafted purchase and sale agreement. City documents do not specify what Bill Wolf Petroleum would do with the building after purchase.

In 2006, when time Rye bought the building, formerly a CVS, the administration then had plans to use it as a city court, police department headquarters. However, when the current administration took the helm they decided it was not in the city’s best interest to go through with the plan, which reportedly would have cost more than $20 million. The mayor and majority of the council officially voted the relocation plan down in 2010.

Currently, the city leases the building to Lester’s clothing store for about $24,000 per month. Lester’s owner offered to buy the property for $3.6 million and the council considered it last year, but the city would have lost $2.6 million on the property if they agreed to that price. Last September, the council voted to extend Lester’s lease, which was set to expire at the end of this month, through the end of 2013, and to hire a brokerage firm to market the property.

Since they hired the broker firm CBRE, the city has received several competitive bids. The council will discuss the Bill Wolf Petroleum Corporation purchase and sale agreement at 8 p.m. on Feb. 27 at the council meeting in city hall. The environmental due diligence period is stil on-going, but is expected to end by mid-March, according to the city resolution. 

Calls and emails sent to Bill Wolf Petroleum and city manager Scott Pickup were unreturned as of publication time.

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