Businesses along Washington Street in north Brainerd are getting a face lift and room for expansion.
Tower Motors recently added a half-log siding to the exterior of its office building. Owner Dave Beutz purchased three nearby buildings that bordered the used car dealership. Beutz said plans are to put half-log exteriors on all of them.
"We needed more space," Beutz said of the business expansion. "
One structure was knocked down last month and allowed more space for cars on the dealership lot. Tower Motors has about 100 cars on the lot and the added space allowed for an increased inventory of about 20 cars.
Little Farm Market on Washington Street in north Brainerd is expanding its business into the building next door.
Dave and Mary Beutz took over the car dealership about 10 years ago. It was a business his father owned it before that. Beutz said he had an opportunity to move to Baxter, but wanted to stay on the corner in Brainerd.
But Beutz said they also wanted to update the car lot's image and liked the log siding look for the business. When the buildings are completed they will have the half-log siding with green trim.
"I hope we start a trend," Beutz said, adding customers and business owners have already stopped by to comment on the change. Beutz said it was an easy installation to the brick and can be accomplished on business fronts for a few thousand dollars.
"It would look nice I think," Beutz said. "Brainerd seems to be struggling a little and Brainerd is really looking for a way to draw people downtown and this may be a way to do it."
The half log siding on the Tower Motors building in north Brainerd is part of an overall facelift and expansion at the used car dealership that will change the look on the block's entire corner.
Beutz said he hopes other business owners look into it.
The changes at the corner meant two businesses leasing space relocated to the former meat market on Oak Street about a month ago. Now Little Farm Market, which is in the building Beutz purchased, will expand into the next door store front. The Little Farm expansion is set to start next week.
"We want to stay in Brainerd," Beutz said. "I wanted to make it look like a very professional used car lot."
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