Team working to renovate Gramling's Building, drive economic development

Former business closed in 2019
Posted at 6:02 PM, May 11, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-11 18:32:41-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — A team is preserving a Tallahassee landmark that's stood for more than a century.

Gramling's, Inc. has sat empty for almost four years now on South Adams Street. It shut down in 2019 after 104 years of business. The calendar inside is frozen in time from when the doors shut.

"I was so sorry to hear that they did close," said new owner, Robert Felicetti. He said he bought the property in 2022. "Nobody bought it, and I said my god, what's going on here? I had to jump in and do something," Felicetti added.

Now, he's working with designers to develop the site into something fresh. "I came up here to go to FSU," Felicetti explained. "I love Tallahassee. I want to see it blossom."

Felicetti is working with Ted Givens, founding partner of 10 Design, to give the building a new look and purpose.

"The idea was maybe start with a blues club or outdoor café," Givens explained. Using the blues music for inspiration, he sketched out concepts in front of the team working to drum up new life for this location.

"I have great hopes for what this will do for the Tallahassee Community," added Dan MacDonald. He helped form the Bradfordville Blues Group. "From the very first day that I discovered the blues I've been hooked ever since," MacDonald shared. He's helping musicians and fans find a new home after the Bradfordville Blues Club closed in early 2023.

MacDonald also said, "the ultimate goal would be to have a history place for live blues music and where, in the long term, live blues music in all of its forms can be performed here where the entire community can come."

The project is designed to tie a neighborhood together where attractions like Cascades Park, SoMo Walls, and Railroad Crossings are also driving business.

"They should've been doing this 25 years ago," Felicetti concluded.

Designers said the project could take 18 months to two years to finish. The new layout could also include a farmers market, artist and veteran housing. They're also working to preserve the trees on the property.