Business Buzz

Calhoun Square

Michael's Hallmark Gold Crown store has been in Calhoun Square, 3001 Hennepin Ave., since the shopping center was built 19 years ago. But Ann Geister, store manager, said they'll be closing up shop permanently at the end of July.

Geister said it's really too bad, but the store is just not busy enough. "There aren't enough businesses left in Calhoun Square to provide enough business to survive," she said.

The nearest Hallmark stores Geister said are downtown in the City Center, 40 S. 7th St., the Hub in Richfield and at Miracle Mile on Excelsior Boulevard in St. Louis Park. She said her store will have sales going to clear out all merchandise until they close at the end of the month. Geister said as of now, the store space will remain vacant.

Vacant space: 50th and Penn

The antique store Olla Podrida, 2309 W. 50th St., closed July 1. Building owner Zehra Keye said Olla Podrida's owner closed when her lease expired because she wanted to have more family time, but also because of concerns about lost parking from the soon-to-be-implemented West 50th Street restriping project.

The restriping, scheduled to be implemented in July by Hennepin County, will take most of the parking off 50th, with some exceptions within the business nodes. Keye said because Olla Podrida's business involved customers moving sometimes heavy furniture, less parking would make doing business difficult. She said she has made numerous calls to Hennepin County Commissioner Gail Dorfman's office to inquire about the project and ask about her concerns, but has not been called back.

Keye said in the 30 years she's owned the building, which houses two retail spaces and two apartments, this is the first time she's ever had a vacancy. "People are hesitant because they don't know what's going to happen," she said.

For now, Keye said the store is still vacant and she's still searching for a tenant. The store is 1,000 square feet on the first floor with a 1,000 square foot basement. For more information about the space contact Keye at 377-0214.