The Economic Vitality committee submitted a Challenge Grant for The Public House for the 2019 funding. The Ace Hardware location at 123 N Chestnut was purchased on Aug. 1 by Amanda Bills and Addi Meyer to open a tap room and restaurant. A date has not been set for them to open.
Renovation of the first floor for the restaurant and bar area along with the upper story apartments was highlighted in the Challenge grant application. A matching grant of up to $75,000 can be awarded through Iowa Economic Development Authority and coordinated by Main Street Iowa.
Main Street Iowa design consultant Tim Reinders worked with Amanda & Addi on a conceptual of the exterior with windows reinserted into the panels that Ace Hardware had created during the 2017 CDBG grant for facade rehabilitation. This is a service offered free to Main Street District property owners through Main Street Iowa. These panels were designed so that windows could be added if needed in future years.
Amanda and Addi plan to keep the original integrity of the hardware store in their renovation plans, and upper story housing is definitely a need in Jefferson. The Economic Vitality committee feels this is a great opportunity for funding for this project.
The application was due on September 20 with only one applicant per Main Street community can be submitted.
Previous Challenge Grant recipients in Jefferson include Sensibly Chic in 2017 and Prairie Lakes AEA apartment in 2018.