People like to argue about what Austin places are and aren't truly iconic, but the Cool Store would probably make most people's lists. (It's at least iconic enough for New Austin to be the cover photo for AirBnB's East Austin neighborhood section for a while.)
Soon, however, the quirky and beloved neighborhood convenience store at East Sixth and Chicon streets will need to be moved to the "former icons" category. As announced in the Austin Business Journal and on Facebook, among other places, the store will be closing Saturday to make way for the new.
According to the Journal, rent and tax hikes are the reasons behind the store's closing, but the owner doesn't want patrons blaming the soon-to-be-former landlord. As Eater Austin has reported, Lazarus Brewing will be moving into the space, a change that's been in the works for a while.
According to a post on Lazarus' website, the look of the space is going to change very little for the moment. In the long run, said Lazarus' Christian Cryder by telephone Thursday, the brewery wants to keep the atmosphere of the store alive.
People on Facebook, Reddit, and probably elsewhere are still expressing outrage or sorrow, of course. And while the space is not going to be the convenience store where neighbors and visitors shopped regularly as well as appreciating the atmosphere, the atmosphere, at least, might not change radically when Lazarus moves in.
"Right now we don't know what's going to change," said Cryder. "We like the vibe of The Cool Store, and we're looking at how to roll that over to the other building [Lazarus will occupy two buildings on the property] as well, in a way that is reminiscent of The Cool Store but also looks like Lazarus."
The Lazarus post also notes that the former Cool Store owner is now operating Tacos y Mas, a food truck behind Whisler's, just down the street from the store.
• The Cool Store on Sixth Street to disappear; new brewpub on tap [Austin Business Journal]
• Change Is Coming [Lazarus Brewing Company website]
• What Austin’s Beer Scene Has In Store For 2016 [Eater Austin]