GrandBob (of GrandBob’s Garden) stopped by with this comment. It’s too smart to keep to myself. (I added a few edits, but tried not to lose any of GrandBob’s personality.) –Becky
I know of a small town locally with only 300 people. Main street is full of Businesses for sale. They have a library (where a beautiful old bank used to be). A grocery store, A lawyer. No gas station except for a Coin Operated Gas Pump among the nearby library. I wandered.
Why doesn’t some people get to-get-her and get a 2 story large brick building and lease out store spaces like a flea-market only more upscale. Share the rent, Utilities, etc. The “City” could allow the building to be Tax Free for 5 years. If it succeeds than that also becomes shared. No one is ever going to buy or rent 90% of the small Main Street Stores. Too risky as the town is now. If a Walmart can succeed near a small town rural area, why couldn’t this.
In this one old Brick building here is some of the Possibilities for little stores:
|A brick building in a small town, full of possibilities.|
- A Bakery,
- A Laundromat,
- A Computer Repair/Used/New business,
- A boutique,
- Hair Salon,
- Barber Shop,
- A grocery store,
- Candy Shop.
- News Sheet or even a Small Newspaper by Computer etc.
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Marco Terry says
I wonder how many small companies would “love” to have 300 customers? Unless there are other larger towns close by, this could actually be an opportunity. Not much room for competition, but 300 folks need all the services that GrandBob mentioned. And more.
And for larger needs, I wonder if the town could team up to build community owned companies – like a small supermarket? This comes to mind, because I got the impression that this is the sort of community that may not have a local super market.
Speaking of super markets and rural services, here is an interesting report that talks about “rural food deserts” – areas without convenient access to grocery shopping. I suspect many of your audience can relate?
Becky McCray says
Marco, you’re hitting on some key rural issues! I know of a few towns that have set up cooperative or community owned grocery stores, including the community owned grocery in Minneola, Kansas, we profiled last year. Another terrific resource for small town grocery stores is the Rural Grocery Initiative.