for sale: the elbow room and cross street station

I was flipping through a recent copy of the Ann Arbor Business Review and noticed this short piece by Paula Gardner on the Elbow Room. Other local blogs could have already reported on the fact that it’s up for sale, but it was news to me. Here’s the article:

A long-time downtown Ypsilanti bar is for sale, giving buyers an opportunity to get a piece of the city’s active nightlife.

The Elbow Room, located on South Washington less than a block from Michigan Avenue, has two potential buyers, said broker Tony Caprarese of Swisher Commercial.

“This is one of those places that has a great name and a great history in terms of downtown entertainment venue,” Caprarese said.

The Elbow Room is a local tavern by day and a venue for young bands by night. That followed decades as a country music bar, but the current owner changed the format a few years ago.

Two leters of intent followed a lot of interest during the month it’s been on the market, Caprarese Said.

“I’m optimistic that we’re going to do a deal with someone who likely will take it to the next level,” he said. That includes potential updates to the bar and stage, as well as rehabbing the upstairs, which was damaged by fire several years ago.

The asking price is $175,000 for the building, and $75,000 for the business…

My guess is that Paula’s never been to the Elbow Room. If she had, I doubt she could have printed those lines about its “great name” and the opportunity for someone to take it to the “next level”. She would have instead focused on the value represented by each 12-hour regulars, and the “Keeping Ypsi Evil” tag-line. (My favorite Elbow Room story comes from Leighton, who books bands there. It involves seeing and man in the bathroom scooping his own vomit out of the sink and back into his mouth.) So, I’m wondering what the deal really is… If Leighton weren’t on the road in his big rig, I’d give him a call. (I wonder if one of those purchase offers, if they do indeed exist, might be from him. Wouldn’t that be cool?)

Also of interest: When poking around on the internet right now looking for information about the Elbow Room’s sale, I discovered that the asking price for the bar where Linette and I first met, which was shortly thereafter condemned, is $119,000. If anyone wants to buy it and turn it into a shrine of some kind, let me know. I’d be happy to contribute stuff to a diorama depicting our first meeting. (I still have the silver outfit that I was wearing and the spoon I used to play my bass with. And, I believe she may still have her overalls.)

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2 Comments

  1. Tony Buttons Esq.
    Posted May 26, 2006 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    “The institution, credited with keeping Ypsilanti evil, comes with one dozen dedicated regulars (alcoholics) worth an estimated $5,000 per month. New White Power nights are also proving to be very lucrative.”

  2. Brent
    Posted March 27, 2008 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    Okay, so as a relative newbie to Ypsi (two years) and not finding google at all useful to find any info on the former Cross St. Station and it’s demise, can someone help me out with info on the bar, when it closed, and just how bad the building is? The current listing calls the structure “distressed.” I’ve heard many terms before to highlight the fact that the current state of a building is sh–, but that is a new one.

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