By Tim Kowols
While Sturgeon Bay’s granary sits on the city’s west side with its future in question, two other communities have seen similar buildings thrive as new business ventures
In Elkhart Lake, Wis. Steve and Julia Sutcliffe bought the local granary and turned it into the Feedmill Shops, which includes a trio of storefronts which now includes a brewery, coffee shop, and gift shop. The cost of converting the old building and meeting all the different regulations was higher than if they wanted to build new. However, Sutcliffe says restoring the historic character of the building was just as important.
Tony Schultz turned a granary on his family’s homestead farm operation in Athens, Wis. into a place where he creates Farm to Table pizzas at his community-supported agriculture business Stoney Acres Farm. Schultz believed it was important to incorporate the building’s original intent into his plans.
Green Bay-based SMET Construction was given the rights to develop Sturgeon Bay’s granary into a proposed brewpub. The site is now awaiting a declaratory ruling from the Department of Natural Resources after its preliminary determination showed the granary to be located below the ordinary high water mark.