Development Agreement Reached for Capetown Plaza

HYANNIS – A redevelopment agreement was reached last week for the Capetown Plaza in Hyannis.

The 49-year lease will bring in more than $150 million for the Barnstable Municipal Airport, which controls the property.

WS Development, which is the current lease holder, had its bid selected by officials last December.

Plans call for redeveloped 300,000-square-foot Landing at Hyannis to include retail space, restaurants, entertainment, offices and more, along with green and open space.

“This was a very significant team effort throughout the town,” said John Griffin, the chair of the Barnstable Municipal Airport Commission.

Through the agreement, WS Development will also pay the Barnstable Housing Trust $2.5 million, as a planned housing component was not allowed due to FAA regulations. The first proposal called for up to 75 housing units in the redevelopment.

The company will pay the trust $75,000 a year for 10 years and then contribute a payment of $1.75 million.

Officials praised the work by the developer to work with the town on the specific provisions within the proposal and lease.

“WS was always at the table as a partner,” said Barnstable Town Manager Mark Ells.

“Strong in their commitment to the town of Barnstable and that is greatly appreciated.”

The signed agreement will allow WS Development to get right to work on redevelopment, even though the lease does not begin until 2024.

The current lease pays the airport about $60,000 per year.

Airport Manager Katie Servis said the property diversifies its revenue stream to help it weather the ebbs and flows of the aviation market.

“Having alternative sources of revenue to maintain our self-sufficiency is key to the airport’s success,” Servis said. “This lease is a major contribution to that revenue.”

The lease puts the airport in a good position to save money for major capital projects, including a runway redevelopment.

“This allows us to set some money aside and to also build some reserves so if we do have more downturns in the aviation market we have a cushion,” Servis said.

WS Development was formed in the 1980s and is a privately held real estate development, management and ownership firm.

The firm currently manages a portfolio of 25 million square feet in nearly 100 properties. The properties are commercially oriented shopping centers consisting of mainly retail, restaurants and entertainment venues.

About Brian Merchant

Brian Merchant grew up in Central Massachusetts and now lives in South Dennis on the Cape. He has been part of the news team in the NewsCenter since the spring of 2014. He studied radio broadcasting at the University of Tennessee.
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