The Big Pine Habitat ReStore will suspend operations as of February 28, 2017.
Due to safety concerns pertaining to the building, the ReStore closed in mid-January. The ReStore staff continued operating on a reduced scale while the staff and Board of Directors continued to closely evaluate all relocation options. The search included buying, renting or building a retail space from Marathon to Key West. Habitat was unable to locate an alternative space that could operate profitably. “We are sad and frustrated that we have been unable to locate a space that works for the community as well as for the organization,” stated Habitat’s Executive Director, Mark Moss.
The Big Pine Key Restore has been an integral part of the Lower Keys community for many years. Its closure is a sad and painful moment for all concerned. The faithful donors and customers have provided much needed revenue to help their neighbors. The numerous hardworking volunteers, along with its dedicated staff, sustained this important revenue source for workforce housing in our community.
Our mission is to ensure that every man, woman and child hasa decent, safe and affordable place to live. The revenue from the ReStore was an important contributor to our mission. Our Board is committed to maintaining the financial health of our Habitat affiliate as we work through this challenge.
We believe that we will eventually locate the right opportunity. In the meantime we are focused on our new home build on Big Coppitt Key and the ten families who will be served. Applications and project information are available online at habitatlowerkeys.org.
Board President Debbie Swift Batty added “Habitat’s relationship with Monroe County remains strong and positive. Monroe County’s staff and leadership have protected the public by insisting that an unsafe building not be occupied. Monroe County has partnered with all three Habitat for Humanity affiliates in Monroe County for many years to create affordable home ownership that stabilizes our communities. We look forward to working with them to propose a reuse of the Big Pine property that supports the creation of affordable housing in the Lower Keys.”
Debbie added, “We ask for your support as we work through this difficult time. We are grateful for the good service rendered by our ReStore employees. They have earned our respect and deep gratitude over the years for their faithful efforts.”