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The Slow Rush toward Expansion

By: Lynn Gannon, Board President

I was listening to The Current radio the other day and they were talking about a new album release by Tame Impala called “The Slow Rush.” Beside chuckling at the oxymoron, that phrase really hit me as so very descriptive of Spiral Co-op’s present journey to a new, larger store. It was way back in October that Matt Malecha and I addressed our Owners at the Annual Meeting and described in the most general terms what we had been working on over the past year. We never envisioned that we’d reach mid-March and still not be in a position where we can announce our new location. It’s disappointing and frustrating that there isn’t more that we can discuss with all of you, but, please, don’t deduce from the radio silence that things are not happening – nothing could be further from the truth!

As I mentioned to several of you when we chatted at the Customer Appreciation sale a little over a week ago, we are still negotiating with the owners of several locations to try to get the best long-term lease agreement for Spiral. I know that the uncertainty of where the Co-op will be located is unnerving, but rest assured, tour team will make sure that the new location, the associated construction, and possible move is minimally disruptive to our Owners and shoppers.

There are so many things in our expansion plans to be excited over: more & roomier shopping aisles, a larger kitchen where Spiral staff can prepare a wide array of deli offerings & grab and go foods, new freezer & refrigeration equipment that will hold more fresh and frozen foods, a community room where folks can hang out & eat while visiting with one another or working on their laptop, and where we can hold community education classes & monthly Board meetings.

Soon we will be launching our capital campaign to raise cash to pay for our expansion project. The majority of the funding for our expansion will be borrowed from cooperative and conventional lenders, and supplemented with funds obtained through Federal and local government programs, but none of these sources of money will be willing to support the Co-op unless we can demonstrate, through a successful capital campaign, that the Co-op’s Owners are also willing to provide a share of the needed funds. Matt and I are working together to set realistic, achievable goals for a campaign to attract new Owners to the Co-op and encourage investments from our Owners who want to make expansion a reality. Stay tuned for more details our Spiral’s Slow Rush to a new, expanded store in 2020!

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