Renovations needed before inn can move forward at Stirling Square

Stirling Square in Greenport.
Stirling Square in Greenport.

Restoration work inside the former Main restaurant at Stirling Square in Greenport could slow the building’s conversion into a five-room inn, according to the building’s new owner. 

Owner Brent Pelton told the Greenport Planning Board at its meeting Thursday night that the transformation may be more difficult than originally thought.

“We’ve found that there’s a relatively rotten beam that needs to be repaired,” said Mr. Pelton, who appeared at the meeting with business partner and former The Riverhead Project owner Dennis McDermott.

Their plans call for a full renovation of the former Main building — the square’s anchor building — and repurposing the second floor to be used as an inn.

“We’re excited to move forward with it,” Mr. Pelton said.

He bought the Main Street parcel in September for $1.95 million. The property had previously been the site of a multi-venture restaurant complex opened by chef Keith Luce in 2013 known as “The Square.” It closed the following December.

Entrepreneur Matt Michel has since opened the popular 1943 Pizza Bar and the cocktail spot Brix and Rye in the complex.

The building that housed anchor restaurant Main has been closed ever since.

Mr. Pelton asked the Planning Board that he be allowed to begin working on the rotten beam and making repairs to the kitchen ceiling that also serves as the flooring on the second floor where the inn would be. Those issues could weaken the structure of the building if left unattended, said project architect Robert Brown.

Village officials said Mr. Pelton could speak to the building department to get the necessary clearance to begin the renovation while the Planning Board looks over his application for the use of the building.

Mr. Pelton said he would remove an awning at the restaurant and would consider donating it to a charity or nonprofit group.

Planning Board member Chris Dowling praised the architectural choices made for the building, like painting it white.

“It’s going to look like a proper New England inn,” he said as he thumbed through the site plan. The board will discuss the plan again at its next meeting in February.

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