Common Language takes a hike

BTL Staff
By | 2018-01-15T22:55:52-04:00 April 11th, 2012|Uncategorized|

By Dawn Wolfe

After thirteen years in its old location at 215 S. Fourth, Common Language bookstore will be hiking roughly four blocks to Braun Court in January of 2005.
There are several reasons for the move, according to Common Language owner and manager Keith Orr.
For one thing, “Parking is horrible on Fourth. I’ve had so many people tell me, even before we considered moving, ‘Oh, I wish the bookstore were in Braun Court,'” which is adjacent to a municipal parking lot.
And, given that Orr’s other business, the /aut/ bar, which he owns with partner Martin Contreras, will be right next door, Orr expects new customers in his LGBT bookstore.
Being next to the bar means that “more of our target marked will be right here, in foot traffic,” said Orr.
The final reason for the move? Orr and Contreras already own the building that will house the bookstore.
“We’ll be paying rent to ourselves,” Orr said. “While we have a good landlord where we’re at, I’d much rather be my own landlord.”
Common Language will remain in its current location through Christmas. Orr hopes to have the move completed between Christmas and New Year’s, with a tentative opening scheduled for Jan. 2.
Orr said that, while the new location is “a little bit smaller” than the original store, “it’s pretty close to what we have now” in terms of square footage.
“Moving in to an old house will give it [the bookstore] a cosier, more homey feel,” he said.
Grand opening plans for the new location are in progress, and future plans include extending the /aut/ bar’s liquor license to the bookstore and adding a small wine bar to the store.

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BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 25th anniversary.