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Save the Merc Legal Fund

Organized by: Save the Merc

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Save's Photo

THE STORY:

The Mercantile building has been a cornerstone of Missoula’s business economy for over a century, an icon for both locals and visitors. Now a local grass roots effort is trying to stop the developer's wrecking ball. Unfortunately, we are up against developer money and their attorneys. Save the Merc has hired legal counsel that specializes in Historic Preservation Law and Real Estate Law to help us. Please consider donating to this fundraiser which is strictly for that help. 

For over 130 years, the Missoula Mercantile has served as an anchor for the Missoula downtown business district. It survived the economic panic of 1893. It advertised uniforms for soldiers in World War I. Many businesses crumbled during the Great Depression, but the Mercantile remained. When malls and suburbs pulled Missoulians away from the downtown, the Mercantile pulled them back again--first as the Bon Marche, then as Bon-Macy’s, and finally as Macy’s. For 132 years it enjoyed continual occupation. For six years it has been vacant, waiting for the next opportunity. Missoula’s local business economy deserves every chance to flourish. In the 1970s, construction of Southgate Mall and other shopping interests pulled both visitors and locals out of the downtown corridor. Over the last two decades, Missoula has invested heavily to reverse the trend. Now downtown is once again a bustling hub of shopping, art galleries, and local eateries.

For the last several years, Missoulians have watched the Mercantile building sit empty, waiting for Octagon Partners--the current owners--to rehabilitate and reopen the space. Every setback has frustrated locals who are eager to see the building occupied again. The Mercantile building has the makings of greatness already. The massive space would be perfect for diversified use; a combination of small business and community services that would provide a draw for locals and tourists alike.

Small businesses keep money in the local economy; they hire local, pay better than average wages, and retain a commitment to community that is sometimes lacking in corporate business decisions. We want the Mercantile to remain representative of Missoula. It is a symbol of the businesses that built the city, yes, but it is more importantly a symbol of opportunity for the next generation of entrepreneurs and investors. Missoula demands better building practices that promote reuse and rehabilitation over wasteful destruction. The greenest building is the one that’s already built; demolishing the Mercantile contributes an extensive amount of materials to landfills and waste sites. It encourages a mindset of disposable, irresponsible development.

Demolition is a permanent, irreversible decision. 

$2,685

 

34% Raised of $8,000 Goal

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  • Anonymous

    $10

  • Mary

    $25

  • Barbara Ferguson

    $100

  • Rob S.

    $50

  • Anonymous

    $100

  • Rebecca Harris Kotula

    $25

  • Goidich Family

     

  • Cynthia Rodriguez

     

  • Patsy O'Keefe

    $50

  • janet simms

    $50

  • Don and Bente Winston

     

  • Robert and Claudia Brown

    $50

  • Marianne Forrest

    $100

  • Anonymous

    $25

  • Anonymous

    $20

  • Scott Derenburger

    $250

  • Sarah

    $20

  • Susan Cuff

    $100

  • anonymous

    $25

  • Anonymous

    $500

  • anonymous

    $50

  • Holly Deluca

     

  • Sara Scott and Carl Davis

    $100

  • Candy Bunch Odiorne

     

  • Joanna Alley

    $25

  • Melissa Blunt

    $50

  • Adam Keele

    $25

  • Leslie Van Stavern Millar

    $35

  • Christine Frame

    $25

  • Barbara Ferguson

    $100

  • Janene Caywood

     

  • Dana Boussard/Stan Reifel

    $200

  • Susan Cuff

    $100

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Organized by

Save the Merc

This is a direct to organizer fundraiser.

Donor Comments

Susan Cuff

Susan Cuff

DONATION: $100

2 years ago

Dana Boussard/Stan Reifel

Dana Boussard/Stan Reifel

DONATION: $200

2 years ago

Janene Caywood

Janene Caywood

2 years ago

Barbara Ferguson

Barbara Ferguson

DONATION: $100

Missoula has lost too many historic buildings. 2 years ago

Christine Frame

Christine Frame

DONATION: $25

2 years ago

Leslie Van Stavern Millar

Leslie Van Stavern Millar

DONATION: $35

2 years ago

Adam Keele

Adam Keele

DONATION: $25

We must preserve beautiful history! In honor of Montana Hodges. 2 years ago

Melissa Blunt

Melissa Blunt

DONATION: $50

2 years ago

Joanna Alley

Joanna Alley

DONATION: $25

Keep Missoula unique and beautiful. History is important! 2 years ago

Candy Bunch Odiorne

Candy Bunch Odiorne

In Memory of Richard Bunch and Jean Winters Bunch 2 years ago

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