Former theater site could become multifamily housing, marijuana facility

THE FORMER SHOWCASE CINEMAS in Seekonk could be redeveloped and split into two parcels, with the undeveloped back portion proposed for condominiums, according to a plan filed with the town, and the original building and a portion of the parking lot converted to a marijuana processing facility. / COURTESY TOWN OF SEEKONK
THE FORMER SHOWCASE CINEMAS in Seekonk could be redeveloped and split into two parcels, with the undeveloped back portion proposed for condominiums, according to a plan filed with the town, and the original building and a portion of the parking lot converted to a marijuana processing facility. / COURTESY TOWN OF SEEKONK

SEEKONK – The former Showcase Cinemas in Seekonk could be redeveloped after years of vacancy. The 22-acre site, now owned by Providence developer H. Charles Tapalian, may be split into two parcels.

The undeveloped back portion of the property, totaling some 15 acres, is proposed for 102 condominiums, according to a plan filed with the town. The developer has requested that this portion of the site, now zoned residential R-3, be included within the multifamily development overlay district, according to the site plan.

A special town meeting, which is required for a zoning change, has been scheduled for Jan. 28.

The original Showcase building, and a portion of its parking lot, could be converted to a marijuana processing and/or grow facility, according to Seekonk Town Planner John Aubin. No plans have been submitted to the town yet, but the property owner was scheduled to discuss his plans with the town’s board of selectmen on Wednesday, according to the board’s agenda.

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The marijuana-related use would require that portion of the site to be included in an overlay district for medical-marijuana and business use.

The property, at 800 Fall River Ave., has been vacant for a decade, when the showcase built a new facility near the Seekonk Square retail center, Aubin said.

Tapalian, who is manager of Providence-based R.I. Seekonk Holdings LLC, purchased the Showcase property for $3.7 million in September, according to online land records with the Bristol County Registry of Deeds. David Tapalian is listed as the registered agent for the real estate company.

H. Charles Tapalian, through his attorney, could not be reached for immediate comment as to his development plans in Seekonk.

Mary MacDonald is a staff writer for the PBN. Contact her at macdonald@pbn.com.