Wednesday, December 1, 2021

At retail: Isthmus Hardware seeks help amid COVID-19 and road reconstruction

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Three months of road construction, coupled with the long-lasting effects of COVID-19, rings true for Isthmus Hardware’s first year of business. Located at the corner of South Bedford Street and West Washington Avenue, the 3,000-square-foot store opened in December.


Barry Adams, State Journal


The pandemic came nine months before the store opened.

Then came road reconstruction work in July that closed a large portion of West Washington Avenue and limited access.

Isthmus Hardware sales are about a third lower than expected and its store is located at the corner of South Bedford Street and West Washington Avenue, looking for assistance.

A GoFundMe page has been launched to help the 3,000-square-foot store reduce its debt from initial stock orders, something that has been challenging for owner Greg Norman. Of the $25,000 target, about $3,347 had been raised by last week.

There is also a concern that a proposed redevelopment project for the site could, at some point, displace the store to another location.



isthmus hardware

Jason Shaw helps customers at Isthmus Hardware on Monday. The store is the only hardware store in Madison downtown.


Barry Adams, State Journal


“Business-wise, I think it’s a really good location,” Norman said. “I expected (revenue) to be higher, but it’s taking longer than I’d like to admit. And now that I’m at it, there’s no turning back.”

The store, which opened in December 2020, is across the street from CVS Pharmacy, in the same block as Echo Tap & Grill and surrounded by student housing, upscale apartments, and single-family homes.



isthmus hardware

Located in a former bank, Isthmus Hardware has a drive-thru. However, it has been closed since July due to the reconstruction of West Washington Avenue.


Barry Adams, State Journal


Norman, along with longtime friend, Jason Shaw, opened the store three years after the closure of Isthmus True Value, which was owned by Dorne Hardware. The store was moved out of its building to allow the expansion of Capital Center Market. Norman and Shaw both worked for years before the store closed.

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