They say good things come to those who wait, and if there’s one thing I’ve learned in the business of downtown development, it’s that nothing happens quickly. If patience is a virtue, then Main Street Homer is one of the most righteous organizations on the planet.
The town of Homer has been waiting for over thirty years for something to happen to the iconic Pan American Gas Station on West Main Street and North 2nd Street and our wait is over. A couple of years ago, we started the project to save this building by procuring a grant to hire an historic architect to create a structural analysis of the building. You’ve probably noticed the progress on the building over the last year as we have completed phase two of the project, the demolition of all the decayed portion of the building was funded by a Paul Bruhn Historic Renovation Subgrant. This is where the building stands now, braced and waiting for phase three, reconstruction.
To fund phase three, we applied for a USDA Rural Business Development Grant (RBDG) and were notified on April 20th that we were awarded $215,027! This grant is the largest single grant Main Street Homer has received to date. These funds will allow the complete restoration of the building. Reconstruction plans include honoring the past of the building by recreating the historic look and feel of the Pan American Gas Station while adding modern amenities. Once complete, the site will be used to create new business for our community – hence the “rural business development” nature of the grant funding. This new business will be a farmers and maker’s market that will in turn grow more businesses from our local growers and artisans. We are very excited to begin this final phase of the project. Look for construction to start soon as we plan for the project to be completed within the next year. We could not have begun this project without the generous donation of the building to Main Street Homer by the Julius and Anita Peterson family.
Thank you for helping us to revitalize Homer one building at a time. See, good things do come to those who wait.
Remember, next Tuesday, May 2nd is Give for Good day – the day of our annual fund drive that allows us to continue our work to revitalize Homer. While we were very fortunately to receive this USDA grant, it will not fund all the equipment, supplies and operating costs Main Street Homer will incur to operate a farmers and maker’s market. Therefore, we need your generous support to help us get this new venture kicked off on the right foot. Please help us by donating to our Give for Good campaign today by scanning the QR code below or going to our website at mainstreethomer.org. Thank you in advance for helping revitalize your community!!!