Yacht Restoration School Embarks on 1831 Mill Project

Medium-sized image unavailable for this photo.
The Aquidneck Mill building was a steam-powered cotton
manufacturing company.

Credit: Jay Picotte, International Yacht Restoration School

There's more to Newport, R.I., than its mansions.

A yacht-building school in Newport, R.I., plans to restore an 1831 National Register-listed mill on the city's developed waterfront.

On Thursday, the International Yacht Restoration School plans to celebrate the groundbreaking of the $7.5 million restoration of the 30,000-square-foot Aquidneck Mill Building, a steam-powered mill with green-granite walls.

"The building is a wonderful example of industrial Newport between the Colonial and Gilded Age periods,? the school's president, Terry Nathan, said in a statement.

The Aquidneck Mill Building was constructed as a cotton mill, the Newport Steam Mill, at a time when Newport was rebuilding itself.

The 14-year-old school, which bought the mill in 1995, will lease part of the building and use the rest as classrooms, workhops, and a library. Located in the heart of historic Newport, the International Yacht Restoration School has transformed a once-abandoned section of the city's waterfront into its campus, which includes a 1903 brick power plant.

The project, which is eligible for $2.9 million in historic tax credits, is scheduled to be completed in the spring of 2009.

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