BURRILLVILLE – It is one of only two gas stations in town, but for the past eight months, it’s been reduced to nothing but a pile of rubble and a gaping hole in the ground.
Now, it appears there are big improvements on the horizon for Eagle Motors Sunoco, Inc.
Owner Robert DePalo has secured a loan of up to $400,000 for the gas station at 180 Chapel St., which has been closed since the start of winter. The loan was granted by Alliance Energy, LLC, a Waltham-based company that distributes gasoline to 800 leased and independently owned gas stations and convenience stores in nine Northeastern states. The company’s brand partners include Exon, Mobil, Shell, Gulf, BP, Xtra Mart and more.
The Chapel Street property was owned by George and Paul Barber starting in 1977 and sold to DePalo in 1987. According to town records, Chapel Street Realty, LLC has paid taxes on the land since 2005.
The gas station sits on a .25 acre lot valued at $152,000. DePalo also owns the abutting property at 172 Chapel St. where he runs a repair shop, also built by the Barbers in 1979. DePalo’s retail space behind the lot, built in 1977, is currently vacant.
Councilor John Anthony Scott referenced the hole in the ground where the business is making improvements to the gas tanks at the board’s June 13 meeting.
“One thing that’s been bothering me is Sunoco. You have this really flimsy fence sitting over there and you look directly across the street and you’ve got a skate park,” said Scott. “I don’t know if there’s something we can do. If they’re out of money, they should be filling that in with dirt because it’s a very, very, very dangerous situation. The fence to keep people out isn’t anywhere near proper.”
Alliance’s new mortgage on the property was filed with the Town Clerk on May 9. It notes that fund totaling up to $400,000 will be used for payment and performance of all obligations of Eagle Motors Sunoco. An additional mortgage on the property of $100,000 is held by Kathleen Ellen Jorgensen.
Attempts to reach DePalo regarding a timeline for improvements have been unsuccessful. Eagle Motors General Manager Jeffrey Peterson confirmed that the station does plan to reopen.