Mayor: Costco ‘still welcome’ in Cranston, just not on Mulligan’s Island property

West Bay

(Credit: Costco Wholesale)

CRANSTON, R.I. (WPRI) — Mayor Ken Hopkins reassured a property developer looking to bring a Costco in Cranston that, while he does not support building it on the Mulligan’s Island property, it is still welcome elsewhere the city.

Hopkins said he would be willing “to work with Costco officials to identify a better, more suitable location” for the supermarket.

This comes after Cranston City Council’s Ordinance Committee denied Coastal Properties’ revised proposal to redevelop the Mulligan’s Island property.

The developer said the revised proposal would remove plans to build restaurants in addition to the Costco, which in turn reduced the trip generation estimate by roughly 1,200 vehicles per week.

But committee members claimed the new plan was too similar to the original proposal.

“It was a proposed box store, it’s still a box store,” Committee Chairman Matthew Reilly said. “Whether there was some fringe on the outside and now there isn’t is of no substantial material difference.”

Hopkins agreed with the committee’s decision, saying “the latest plans kept those major elements with minor alterations that were not really material changes.”

Their initial plan was shot down last year after several Cranston residents spoke out against it.

“We are not an anti-development group, we are not against development in Cranston. It needs to be something that fits there,” Rachel McNally of the Cranston Neighbors for Smart Development said.

The state initially allowed the owners of Mulligan’s Island to purchase the land so it could be used as natural buffer between the neighborhood and nearby state buildings such as the ACI.

Hopkins said there are several other sites in Cranston where a Costco would fit perfectly, and he invited Coastal Properties to take a look at them.

“Our residents have always been in favor of Costco at the right location,” he said. “We can find a
Cranston site that works for Costco and the city if the company gives us a chance.”

It’s unclear whether Coastal Properties is considering another location in Cranston for their development.

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