Hayhurst Brothers, GIA update Rotary on revitalization project
The Hayhurst Brothers made a presentation to the Rotary Club of Graham Tuesday, updating the group on the progress of a project they are assisting the Graham Industrial Association with to revitalize the downtown square.
The GIA released the first renderings and a floor plan for the project in December, with the project being described as a mixed use indoor and outdoor space open to retail and restaurant by Joe Beruta, Executive Director of Economic Development and the GIA. Beruta said if everything goes accordingly, the project on 509 and 511 4th Street is looking to be completed around 2022.
“The Construction RFP (request for proposal), if everything goes according to schedule, we will get that out at the end of the month and we will probably have a 30-day bid period if we land on multiple offers from a GC (general contractor) perspective. Then we will start going parallel to funding and starting to put a shovel in the ground,” Beruta said to the club Tuesday. “We think 18 months, just based on what we see today in terms of the existing building and that lot, so early 2022 we will actually cut the ribbon assuming everything falls in order with that timeline and, of course, the money falls in as well.”
Beruta said the GIA owns both properties and the funding for the project will be a goal of the GIA board.
“They are working towards funding that,” Beruta said. “From a GIA perspective it will be part of an investment and there will be a portion that is fundraising.”
The location downstairs will have three food pods and an anchor location which Beruta said is designed to be flexible for businesses with an interest in the space.
“They are open space that could accommodate retail as well, but it is a mixed use retail, restaurant facility,” Beruta said. “We are taking a concept that is very popular and up-and-coming in the metroplex and that is the food hall concept, where we have many different locations, the mall food court concept where they have many multiple locations of food and retail together to choose from in one social communal space.”
The anchor location of approximately 600 square feet will also be a possible retail or restaurant location, while the three food pods will serve a smaller space.
“The food pods are smaller concepts, don’t have a lot of overhead as entrepreneur in terms of your physical space and your lease or rent and allows you to get started, hopefully build up a book of business and then the opportunity of getting out into our square once you have built that book of business,” Beruta said. “That is the concept. We have seen it very popular in some of the metroplex locations.”
Seth Hayhurst said the idea for the project is for smaller food or retail locations to get their feet wet and build their business before moving to a more permanent location on the downtown square.
“One of the hardest things to do in the food industry is proof of concept because it takes so much capital to get to a point where you can even start getting people to try your foods, or whatever the case may be, so this provides an opportunity. There is only going to be maybe three of these pods which is a perfect size,” Seth said. “The goal would be to allow a lot of these people to make amazing tamales or make the best homemade ice cream in the world, whatever it is they do and have no way (...) to gain enough capital to get their own space and have everything they need to do it. This allows them to proof their concept for a lot less money up front, a lot less overhead. Once they gain that confidence as an entrepreneur, as a chef, or as a food producer, then it gives them that confidence to open up a full brick and mortar on the square.”
The Hayhurst Brothers, who are assisting the project, are featured on the DIY Network program ‘Texas Flip N Move.’ The trio is made up of brothers Jake, Seth and Daniel, who work from their office in Bridgeport.
“We own a design and build firm in Bridgeport, so we design and build homes, commercial spaces and furniture and we also have a cabinet shop, so we do all the detail work in these projects,” Jake said.
The three have ties to the community with their grandmother, who lived on Indiana St. and had a lake house at Possum Kingdom Lake. They said they are looking forward to the opportunity to be reconnected with the community and being able to help reinvigorate the downtown square.
“We jumped at it to kind of be a part of the community again and are super excited and we think that we have got something pretty cool that is going to be going on the square,” Seth said. “Y’all’s square is really, really amazing. We have done a lot of work on squares. Quite a while ago we created a spot in Denton city on their square. It was called West Oak Coffee Bar and we did the design and furniture for that. We saw kind of the square come to life at that point. Not long after that we did the same thing on Decatur square and we saw the square come to life, so seeing what y’all have and the potential of that square is amazing.”
For the full story, see the Saturday, Jan. 11 edition of The Graham Leader.