The long-awaited removal of the downtown fuel tank farm will begin on Monday, as crews begin the initial work to dismantle some of the last vestiges of the island’s industrial waterfront.
The aging fuel tanks were previously operated by Harbor Fuel before it moved its operations out of town to Industry Road, near the airport. The tank removal project is being commissioned by the current owner of the property, Winthrop Nantucket.
In May, Winthrop submitted an application to the Conservation Commission for approval to demolish eight of the 11 fuel tanks. Some disruption and loss of parking spaces in the Stop & Shop parking lot are expected while the work is underway.
The tank farm property is all that remains of Winthrop’s once sprawling portfolio of downtown island real estate, which it acquired from the late Walter Beinecke’s Sherburne Associates in 1986.
In recent years, it has been selling its holdings, including the most recent sale in December 2020 of several downtown properties including Stop & Shop, The Haulover, Fresh, and Hepburn, to Steve Karp’s New England Development.
The town is currently exploring the possibility of purchasing the tank farm parcel once the fuel silos are removed, as it is a key property for the potential redevelopment of the waterfront area known as Harbor Place.