No plans yet for Kelly/LIDL Nags Head site 

By on August 25, 2022

New owners still in discussions, mulling options

The property’s newest owners say they are still discussing plans for the site. (Google Maps)

One of the new owners of the property that once housed Mike Kelly’s Outer Banks Restaurant &Tavern in Nags Head says the company “do[es] not have any plans as of now,” for the site, and that they are reviewing a range of options including combined commercial and housing uses as well as a project that is solely housing.

Local building contractor Merritt Hooper, one of three partners in the Nags Head 99 LLC that purchased the property in February 2022, said the group is in discussions with architects and other commercial entities about ideas for the site. (He declined to name the other partners.)  In response to a Voice question, Hooper said that any timetable for approaching the Town of Nags Head with a plan is still well off in the future.

Whatever ends up on the five-acre property will end a years-long stretch in which the once bustling site in prime territory along the bypass has stood bare and abandoned.

In 2017, Mike Kelly sold his iconic restaurant and music venue to the German grocer LIDL for $3.9 million. After LIDL had gone through a bumpy Nags Head process to secure a site plan for a 36,000 square ft. grocery store, it abandoned its plans and put the property on the market again in 2020. On Feb. 8, 2022, Nags Head 99 LLC purchased it from LIDL for $2 million.





  • Patricia Merskip

    Put ‘AFFORDALE HOUSING’ there for locals and not for tourists….again, we keep this place going once the tourists leave and we deserve affordable housing as the rents keep going up here for a dump that wants anywhere from $1400 to $2100….outrageous….Saga has enough property owned here and if they were to do this they wouldn’t charge affordable rent but would again look for the $$$$. It’s time to think of us…..tired of trying to have all of the politicians here to look out for us.

    Thursday, Aug 25 @ 5:40 pm
  • Jim

    Wonder what’s going on with the old burger king site.
    Doesn’t look very good.

    Thursday, Aug 25 @ 7:33 pm
  • Zia Montesi

    As a full time resident for 24yrs, and in the same boat, no longer owning a home, victim to affordable housing on limited income, still working to live…come on guys, housing housing housing is the NUMBER ONE problem facing lack of employees, the service industry, in THIS resort area.
    It won’t matter our reclaimed beaches are beautiful, and all these beautiful homes are available for vacation without sufficient employees as we’ve experienced the past 2 rental seasons. Granted COVID impacted the world.
    Yes spending by visitors has increased in Dare Country improving taxes, and savings per tax payer yet it won’t matter if we have no one to provide ‘service’.
    Dare and Currituck County need to get together to solve this HUGE problem.

    Friday, Aug 26 @ 6:15 am
  • kdh back seat reviewer

    This an addition to the very popular OBX parlor game – guess what will be there next.

    Friday, Aug 26 @ 8:25 am
  • Steve Railsback

    Since the person signing the LLC papers for Nags Head 99 runs a small local firm that provides HOA management services, it would not surprise me if they eventually build some kind of housing or mixed use on the site.

    Friday, Aug 26 @ 8:40 am
  • Mike Raphone

    Or, what those who are complaining about affordable housing should do is just leave, and go elsewhere where they don’t gouge rental prices. Then see just how all of these businesses get along with zero employees. It would be interesting to see the eventual outcome.

    Actually, I already know what they do. They pack 10-15 “students” into houses they own, and charge them rent, and basically make their payroll money back.

    Friday, Aug 26 @ 10:18 am
  • Ellen

    So many of the architecturally, interesting buildings left were created by Jude LaBlanc.
    A Resterant by George, The Car Museum, Barrier Island Condos, Barrier Island Resterant.
    Kelly’s is the last remaining example of what was a time of creativity here. Whatever happens I pray the owner and contractor do something for all of us to be proud of.

    Friday, Aug 26 @ 2:27 pm
  • G-Mac

    Or maybe most of the affordable housing crowd could get off their rump, get a legit job and make enough money to not whine about wanting everything for nothing or free their entire lives?

    Friday, Aug 26 @ 4:20 pm
  • Kwitchiebichin

    I demand a huge affordable housing complex with an on-site drug rehab facility be built immediately.

    Friday, Aug 26 @ 8:54 pm
  • Steven

    G-Mac, it’s more simple than that, employers do not pay a living wage..

    Saturday, Aug 27 @ 5:47 am
  • Josh

    Regardless of what will be built there, just mow the grass and maintain the multi million dollar property. It’s looking pretty rough and run down around there.

    Saturday, Aug 27 @ 7:09 am
  • Doug S

    Somehow regulate the Air BNB type of short term rentals in residential neighborhoods like a lot of other areas around the country and the affordable housing problem will disappear.

    Saturday, Aug 27 @ 8:46 am
  • Happily Retired

    Affordable housing is a relative term. There certainly isn’t any lack of buyers currently so the housing seems to be affordable. What the property owners do with their property is a different story. Real estate is far too valuable around here to turn into low income housing and those who choose to rent their properties expect a certain return on their investments.

    Sunday, Aug 28 @ 6:41 am
  • xzdcatcs

    I read all the comments and I really like the sumitters name that says it all….”Kwitchiebichin”… A lot of thought went into that. 😉

    Tuesday, Aug 30 @ 6:31 am