Tommy and Melissa Kennedy’s HOMES Brewery is beginning to materialize on the corner of Jackson Ave. and Collingwood, formerly a Culligan office and more recently Launch skateboards. HOMES, says Tommy, is spelled in all caps because it’s a reference to the Great Lakes, though he doesn’t belabor it–“some people get it, some don’t.”
In early July, the back parking lot had become a deep pit to make room for a series of enormous cisterns. Though they look as though they might be part of a brewing operation, they’re actually stormwater retention, an upgrade required as part of their renovation of the building. Tommy describes them as “excessive!”–though he’s not so much complaining as exclaiming at the size of the things: “I get it. The city is trying to take the burden off the storm-water system.”
We stopped to watch the earth move one afternoon and asked engineer Jim Cherben how the adjacent neighbors on Collingwood felt about their side yard suddenly becoming a quarry. He said “they’re OK with it. The upstairs tenant is the brewmaster.” Tommy later clarified that the Kennedys bought that property too. He added that the downstairs tenant has lived there for thirty-three years and used to be Culligan’s bookkeeper. “Sweet Sally,” as he calls her, is eagerly following the construction.
Tommy hopes the brewpub will be open later this fall. He’ll have a full kitchen too. Noerung Hang of No Thai! will be handling that.
The skateboard shop moved out of the building last winter. Its main store is still on South U–this was an unsuccessful experiment for Launch, but Tommy says even when the brewpub is finished, he may be renting out the front part of the building for some kind of retail.