Historic Rhode Island diner heads to public auction

The Silver Top Diner has been sitting unused in a lot in Pawtucket since 2002. (WJAR Archive)

An Art Deco-style diner built in what an expert calls the "golden age of the diner" is being auctioned off after sitting vacant for 14 years in a weed-strewn lot in Pawtucket.

The Pawtucket Redevelopment Agency says it scheduled a public auction to sell the historic Silver Top Diner on Oct 5.

Built in 1938, the diner was located in Providence for about 65 years until forced to move in 2002 to make room for housing near the Providence Place mall.

Pawtucket officials offered the diner operator a loan to move it to city-owned land, but there were disagreements over how to operate it.

An appraiser estimates the value of the diner at between $20,000 and $30,000, but says it might cost $250,000 to refurbish.

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