BARRINGTON, R.I. (WPRI) — The owners of the Belton Court mansion on Barrington’s Middle Highway have applied for a permit to demolish the historic structure.
The 55,000-square-foot building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The palatial estate once belonged to Frederick Peck. It was built and expanded upon in the early 1900’s but has sat vacant since 2007 and fallen into severe disrepair.
Massachusetts-based ShineHarmony purchased the property in 2017. EastBayRI, which first reported on the proposed demolition, said the company had planned to turn the property into housing.
Barrington Town Manager Philip Hervey told 12 News on Friday that town officials were working to schedule a meeting with the building’s ownership team to discuss their intentions for the property before any demolition begins.
“The town is very concerned about the application to demolish this important architectural landmark,” Hervey told 12 News in an email. “It’s the centerpiece of the master plan approved for redevelopment of the site. Demolition would void the master plan approval.”
Hervey said the the town can’t deny the demolition permit once all of the requirements are met.
The land was previously home to Barrington College and Zion Bible College.
After ShineHarmony bought the property in 2011, the company had planned to turn it into a continuing care retirement community, but abandoned those plans in 2017 and listed the parcel for sale.
More recently, the company seemingly abandoned plans for a sale and proposed new plans for redeveloping the property.
A representative for ShineHarmony could not immediately be reached for comment.