The Vineyard Gazette – Martha’s Vineyard News

The building housing the Island’s last main street hardware store, 30 Circuit avenue in Oak Bluffs, has changed hands after more than 90 years under the ownership of the Phillips family. But Phillips Hardware isn’t going anywhere, and the deed for 30 Circuit avenue hasn’t traveled very far either.

The Pacheco family, owners of Reliable Market in Oak Bluffs, purchased the longstanding grocery store’s neighboring building for $2.3 million last week under the name 30 Circuit LLC. Phillips Hardware will remain in the building for at least three more years, owners and sisters Donna Leon and Susan Phillips told the Gazette by phone this week.

“At that point, we may retire,” Ms. Leon said. “Probably we will retire — but not definitely.”

The business has been in the Phillips family since 1928, and has long offered supplies, hardware and tools in the heart of downtown Oak Bluffs.

Reliable Market owner Robert Pacheco said the purchase was an unexpected opportunity, but one that acts as a boon for the neighboring family-owned businesses.

“It’s pretty much a win-win for us, the Phillips girls and the community,” Mr. Pacheco said. “I don’t think you could ask for more than that.”

By keeping Phillips Hardware in the building, Mr. Pacheco said he gets to remain next to his longtime neighbors who help keep the downtown vibrant.

“It’s an anchor business,” he said. “There’s no sense in keeping the building empty.”

Mr. Pacheco said plans for the building once the hardware store leaves are still unformed, adding that he has several years to work out a plan.

“It gives us time to create a game plan. . . look at our options,” Mr. Pacheco said.

Ms. Phillips and Ms. Leon said they hoped to see the storefront remain a hardware business after they leave.

“Ultimately the best-case scenario would be for someone to continue the business,” Ms. Phillips said.

She added she’s happy with the sale, and with the new landlords.

“We think it will work out well,” she said.

Mr. Pacheco cited the longstanding relationship between the two businesses. The hardware store has been a neighbor to Reliable Market since the grocery first opened in what is now Basics Clothing Company, he said.

“We’ve been neighbors with the Phillips family since 1947, on one side or the other,” Mr. Pacheco said. “They’re just solid people.”

Now he said it’s time to get ready for the busy summer months.

“For us and the Phillips girls, it’s just business as usual,” Mr. Pacheco said.

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