BENNINGTON — The former Rehm-Brandt's Design building on Main Street has new owners.
Carson Thurber said he and his wife Alexandra Wassick want to make improvements to the building at 431 Main St. and are seeking commercial tenants.
"There are a lot of things happening downtown," Thurber said on Thursday. "The overall vibe is great. We thought that if we could have an impact, then we want to be a part of it."
They both have connections to other local businesses, he said.
"Our families have been business owners in the Bennington community for decades including: E. P. Mahar and Son Funeral Home, Lauzon Machine and Engineering, Thurber's Garage, and Wassick Tire Service," he said.
CAT LLC, an entity Thurber established earlier this month, purchased the property from Mary Muckle and Kelly Rehm-Brandt for $61,000 on Wednesday, according to a property transfer return filed with the Town Clerk. The building is assessed at $276,700.
The two-story building has retail and office space on the first floor and a two-bedroom apartment on the second floor. Built in 1962, it replaced the four-story Paradise Restaurant, one of several buildings ravaged by fire in 1961. The building was home to Evan's News and then Rehm-Brandt's Design for about 23 years, until that business closed last fall.
Thurber, who lives in Woodford and works at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, spoke of other developments in town that signal progress, among them, the Ninja Trail and a proposed redevelopment of the Greenberg Block near Four Corners. Those are some of the reasons they want to stay and invest in Bennington, he said.
Thurber said they plan to work with local contractors to make improvements to the building. That includes a new roof and upgrades to the heating system.
Thurber said he and Wassick "look forward to becoming a small part in the rich history of the building and our downtown."
"We both feel incredibly lucky to have grown up in Bennington, to be raising our young family here, and to now be able to have some greater involvement in the revitalization that continues in our downtown," he said.
— Contact Ed Damon at 802-447-7567, ext. 111.