‘Gateway’ business proposed for downtown Hilbert

February 23, 2017

By Ed Byrne The Brillion News

HILBERT – Businessman Todd Thiel met with the Hilbert Village Board last week and laid out his plans for a new business at the most visible and high-traffic intersection in Hilbert.

Thiel is planning to restore and remodel a two-story brick service station and garage building at Eighth Street and Main Street, turning it into a convenience grocery store, coffee shop and boutique gift shop.

Thiel said the business would feature “grab and go” packaged foods and be defined by offering “simple little conveniences.”

He is also envisioning the shop as a UPS and FedEx drop, a dry cleaning outlet and small flower shop. It would be a WI-FI spot. The store would feature a drive-through window for food, beverages and almost anything else the store sells.

The building is in one of the best commercial locations in the village, on State 57/32 where it intersects with State 114. About 15,000 vehicles per day go through the intersection.

“The goal of this project is to try to bring products and services to the people of the Village of Hilbert,” Thiel said. “When you live here, you have to travel for just about everything. We hope to alleviate that.”

The corner is the gateway to the Main Street Downtown Business District and Thiel said the building would set the tone for the rebirth of the downtown.

“We want to do this right,” he said. Thiel said he will spend up to $2 million when all is said and done.

The preliminary design includes indoor-outdoor table space for customers, with overhead doors connecting the two spaces.

Thiel bought the building in October of 2014 and later purchased the two-story home immediately east of the store.

The building includes 38,000 square feet of space. It would expand to 53,000 square feet, with work on the building to start by May of this year. The building has 400 square feet of space on the second floor, which Thiel said could be used for meetings and conferences.

Plans for the business were guided in large part by a survey of residents conducted by the village in the spring of 2015. It showed that most Hilbert residents shopped in Chilton, Darboy and Brillion – in that order.

But for convenience needs, Thiel is hoping his business – which he plans to call the Hayseed Exchange – would fill that niche.

Please see the complete story in the February 23, 2017 edition of The Brillion News. 

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