According to port CEO Jim Rothlin, the commission is weighing a $4.5 million offer from development firm Sound West Group to purchase the Washington Avenue property. By law, the port can’t sell the land for less than fair market value.
Sound West partner Mike Brown told me the firm is interested in creating a mixed-use development on the 2-acre site.
The port bought the land from Kitsap Consolidated Housing Authority in 2009 for $3.5 million to provide parking for the marina. The district put the property on the market last year with an asking price of $5 million.
Port CEO Jim Rothlin said the goal of the sale would be to pay off the debt from the purchase while still maintaining parking for boaters.
“At the time of the purchase the port’s intent was always to see development occur there at some point that would help increase growth and economic development for the community,” Rothlin said prior to a Nov. 8 public hearing on the potential sale.
“But the priority was really to make sure we secured parking for the marina and were able to pay off debt on that property as well.”
South Kitsap resident Roger Gay was the only member of the public to offer comment. He urged commissioners to be upfront with the public about the process and the potential impact development of the property might have on the marina.
“You need to have those answers no ahead of time as much as possible,” Gay said.
Port commissioners vowed to only agree to a sale if parking for the marina was preserved.
The commission will review a purchase and sale agreement for the property at its regular meeting, scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday at Bremerton National Airport. Approval of the port’s 2017 budget also is on the agenda.