31.10 2016

Across the road….

So, with some big plans for the block that has been our home for the last 14 years, and some uncertainty as to whether our building will be affected (77 Shortmarket Street is a Heritage Building, and has not been sold to the developers by our landlord at the time of writing this), we have decided to make some contingency plans in the event that we will either lose the building – or that construction will mean that we have to vacate for a period, or more permanently.

While the development itself is highly controversial due to the historical charm of the area, (and anyone that knows what packing is like knows that moving is not fun) – we’re keeping an open mind as change is very often a good thing and it may be fun to create some new memories in a fresh space. After all, any creative loves a blank canvas!

Here’s some info about the actual development: http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/western-cape/nod-for-monster-high-rise-in-bo-kaap-2031868 (Please note, it has been difficult to find an article to share with you that is not heated in some way, as the development is a sensitive matter to residents that have lived in this historical area for generations. The opinions in this article do not represent or reflect in any way any opinions of Streetwires. We simply just wait, and plan for all outcomes, to keep the best interests of our business top of mind.) A reference is made to our little home though: Brummer said “careful consideration” had been given to working around a small property which its owner, Cecily Blumberg, did not want to sell.’ It is important to mention that both the developers, and Ms Blumberg have been incredibly helpful and accomodating with us throughout the process, and it was in fact Ms Blumberg who has shown us an alternative option if needed.

So through this, we have already found a new space, which we are thinking about – literally across the road from where we are now, next to our favourite Italian mechanic Tony, (who we still somehow want to hear swearing into the engines of vintage cars!)

While the space is currently a maze of strange rooms (You need a GPS to find your way out), and a storage place for car tyres (great ambience, and rubber smell hmmm), it has loads of natural light for a new artist studio, handy dispatch area for those boxes and boxes of wire art that travel across the globe, plus ramp access from street level for visitors (no more stairs, yay!), so it looks like a great option for us.

There’s going to be a lot of work to be done, as a tyre storage facility does not make for great interior décor, or building layout – but hopefully with the right help (perhaps some interior design / layout students, flooring and paint samples, dry-walling heavies – hint, hint), we’ll have something amazing to open up for a First Thursday early next year.

So, while we wait to hear more (development is due to start around February 2017), we thought you’d enjoy looking at a collection of some moments, memories and the gradual transformation of 77 Shortmarket in all the years we’ve filled the space with laughter, music, beads, braais, life-size lions, tour groups, and kilometres of wire.