Downtown Springfield may be getting its first rooftop bar as early as next spring. The co-owners of Floyd’s Thirst Parlor, Andrew Denton and Jeremy Bredemeyer, made an appearance before the city of Springfield’s Economic Development Commission on Oct. 19 to request $520,000 in funding from the Central Area TIF toward the total project cost of just over $1.5 million. The EDC unanimously approved the request, which now moves on to the city council for a final review and vote.
Floyd’s Thirst Parlor, 210 S. Fifth St., has been in business for nearly 20 years. Denton and Bredemeyer have owned the business for more than six years.
“This is something we’ve been working hard on for over a year,” said Denton. “Out of the ashes of COVID, we want to build something really unique and give back to a part of the city we love.”
He said the project also includes a significant expansion of the kitchen, which will lead to “readjusting our entire business model.” Denton said the addition of food service means Floyd’s would be able to expand its hours to 11 a.m.-1 a.m., five or six days a week, in addition to hosting events.
According to Denton, Floyd’s currently has about 1,600 square feet of usable space, which will double to nearly 3,000 square feet with the addition of the rooftop space. “It will increase our occupancy to 450 people. I’d like to see it be a heated area that we could use year-round,” he said, noting that they are still exploring various options for utilizing the rooftop space during inclement weather.
Just over a year ago, the EDC recommended $1 million in TIF assistance to help redevelop the property at 322 E. Adams into a rooftop bar and food hall. However, the Public Market project, as it came to be known, has yet to begin construction and was relying on crowdfunding to cover a portion of the renovation costs. In response to a request for an update from commissioner Sheila Stocks-Smith, Mayor Jim Langfelder said today that the Public Market project is in the midst of an ownership change but should be proceeding soon.
Ward 5 alderwoman LaKeisha Purchase said she met with Denton and Bredemeyer last week. “I was excited about it when I saw the drawings and heard about the entities that are involved.” She noted that O’Shea Builders is the general contractor and the project has strong union support, in addition to financing from the owners’ bank. “It made me feel confident that they’re very serious about this project,” she said.
Denton told the EDC he anticipates creating 25 full-time jobs and up to 16 part-time jobs, due to the increased hours and capacity. “We’ll keep the bar operating as much as possible during construction and also use that time to start hiring and training people,” he said.
Denton and Bredemeyer told the EDC they had already secured $1 million in financing from a local bank, and their architect, Tim Smith of Evan Lloyd Associates, said he had drawings completed and ready to submit for permits as soon as next week. The project is anticipated to be completed in spring 2022.