January 31, 2017
POSTED BY: Julie Blakeslee
The Violation made BRS do some quick and deep thinking about needing to move office. Brilliantly- Selena and Dylan founded BRS on the East side of ATX in 1994. After 22 years- the east side is a big part of the firm’s identity. Personally, it took me a little time to get my East Side on. But soon our neighbors were like family. The 6th street cowboy gives me a shout out.
When the churro trailer set up next door, I knew not to assume that they were frying this gringa up to serve to tourists. Or actual dogs for that matter. I stopped trying to find the home of every chicken I found wandering on the street and finally stopped bringing fabulous shiny piñatas to every party.
And when we looked in other parts of town to office- they just seemed a little too. too. not BRS. Thus our buckling down to try and stay put. Last week we took a trip to the history center to see if historically there was parking with this building.
This photo is from sometime b/t 1903-1914. But even before that in 1887 Kunz Groceries and Beer was on this corner. First street seems to have always been a mix of commercial and houses. It’s understatement to say that the history and politics of this neighborhood are very tough. After settling in our new home for a few years,
we arrived at work one morning to see our neighbors Sergio and Monica’s shop being bulldozed. This shit actually happens? I felt like a complete gringa asshole once again- never mind the fact that I had a yelling street fight with the new owner of the demolished building when he came to threaten me and my business the week before. The new owner told the Statesman — he wanted his building to be beautiful just like Big Red Sun. It’s confusing to become part of the fabric of this old neighborhood- we are valued in some ways but I’m sure also vilified for gentrifying. The CoA has contacted the business owners on Cesar Chavez about creating an IBIZ district- we sat in a CoA meeting and shuddered as we contemplated the city “solving” for “connectivity” issues on the street. This charming neighborhood has infected me. Last one in- shut the door to change. I’m sure that’s not the answer- but we do know that we have to honor this neighborhood, these neighbors and the changing city. And if the CoA is asking for our help- we’d be remiss to leave.