By DALE P. FAULKNER
Sun Staff Writer
WESTERLY — It appears that big changes are in store for a prominent downtown building but the owners aren’t talking yet. Artist’s renderings attached to windows of the former 84 High Street cafe in the Nardone Block, in the heart of downtown, show two potential options including one that depicts an attractive dining experience with rooftop, alfresco seating, replete with colorful umbrellas atop the tables.
The building was bought for $323,000 in June by 82 High Street LLC. It was formerly owned by the Downtown Group LLC., a business entity created by Dr. Carlo Brogna and his wife, Sheila Abbott.
The new owners of the Nardone Block, 82 High Street LLC, include Nicholas Moore, a Greenwich, Conn., lawyer with a Watch Hill residence. Moore works for and with Charles Royce, who spearheaded the resurrections of both the Ocean House and the Weekapaug Inn.
Moore declined to discuss the group’s plans for the Nardone Block or 10 Canal St., which was also acquired by a limited liability company connected to Moore in June. Like the Nardone Block, 10 Canal St., also known as the Martin House, was previously owned by Brogna’s Downtown Group. There was no money exchanged for the Martin House transaction, according to the town’s online assessor’s records.
“We’ll have something to say in the future but not at this time,” Moore said.
A second set of renderings depict a less lavish dining arrangement but also features outdoor dining on the ground level of High Street. Both sets of drawings show plans to upgrade the facade on the portion of the building where the restaurant had been located. The restaurant moved to Canal Street in December and is now called 84 Tavern on Canal.
There are no applications on file in Town Hall for the envisioned changes to the Nardone Block. The building also houses the United Theatre, which the Westerly Land Trust plans to renovate and transform into a performing arts center. The Royce Family Fund assisted the land trust with purchasing the theater from Brogna in 2006.