Jane and Georgie, a Rehoboth Beach boutique, hopes someone will step forward and move the store, literally.
Jane and Georgie, 419 Rehoboth Ave., plans to build a new, larger building and has reached an agreement with the Coalition for West Rehoboth to donate the existing store, a cottage-style house, to the coalition to be used as a house in West Rehoboth.
But there’s a catch: another $10,000 is needed to raise 11 sets of electrical wires en route to a prospective home on Burton Avenue, a mile-and-a-half away.
Kevin McKinney, project director for the coalition, said the building is so tall once it’s on the truck, 21 feet, that power lines must be raised in order for it to pass through. Two other homes the coalition previously relocated were one-floor ranch-style homes, as opposed to the two-story Jane and Georgie cottage.
Jane and Georgie co-owner Kate Chambers said, “It’s a great building. It’s really sweet. I hated to tear the building down. So when the opportunity came that we could possibly donate it, that was really exciting.”
McKinney said normally the $10,000 could be covered through grants or private contributions, but the new Jane and Georgie, being built by Beracah Homes, is scheduled to begin construction at the end of the month. If the $10,000 cannot be raised, the Chambers family, which owns the store, will have to demolish the building.
“It’s kind of fallen apart at the seams now,” Chambers said. “As it stands, we’re still trying to make it work. I don’t know if it’s actually going to happen. But we’re trying to do everything we can to make it happen, because it seems like a win-win situation.”
McKinney agreed, saying it would be a shame to tear down the building, which is in great condition after being renovated in 2010.
Chambers said the time crunch comes from the need to complete the new store in time to open by March. She said a need for more fitting rooms, updated heating and air conditioning and additional space prompted the decision to build a new building.
“There were so many things we needed to fix that we thought it would be better to start from scratch,” she said.
Chambers said the new store would be similar, but it would be set closer to Rehoboth Avenue and will have a more open floor area and three fitting rooms. She said she wanted a more open floor plan to cut down on theft.
McKinney said the coalition has the permits and the manpower in place to move the building; the last hurdle is the cost of raising the power lines. He said the building can be converted into an affordable home, for sale or rent. McKinney said the rent could be as low as $500.
He said moving the building would benefit everyone. Because the coalition is a 501c(3) nonprofit, prospective donors could receive tax credits for their donation, McKinney said.
“We haven’t lost hope,” Chambers said.
For information on donating, call Kevin McKinney at 362-6453, or visit the Coalition for West Rehoboth at its office, 19801 Norwood St.