SOUTH GLENS FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Common Roots Brewing Company has had a busy few years. Its original Saratoga Avenue brewery space was destroyed by a fire in 2019, right as the owners were launching an expansion. With community support, the company’s new, bigger and better brewery, taproom and restaurant opened in the summer of 2020. After two years of success there, the family behind one of South Glens Falls’ most well-known businesses is ready to grow again.
Father-and-son co-owners Bert and Christian Weber are buying the property next door, on the other side of West Marion Avenue. The three-dwelling property has been in the family’s sights for some time, and now, will turn their business into something resembling a full Common Roots campus.
“It really started when we were looking for additional storage, but also somewhere to move our wild ale program,” said Bert Weber, referring to the brewery’s series of ales made in collaboration with other areas breweries. “We were looking in places like southern Saratoga County, for a place to house that end of the operation. And then” – with a nod out the taproom window to the neighboring property – “this space came open, and it just made a lot of sense being right next door.”
The plan was to prioritize more storage at first, but that’s changed. Now, the planned 18,000-square-foot building will house a bit of almost everything – more food, more storage, and more space to host outdoor events, and even weddings. Clearing out storage space in the current building will allow for the installation of more brewing tanks, to boot. Bert and Christian say that they’ll be able to up their brewing capacity from 8,000 barrels per year to around 12,000.
The work doesn’t come cheap. The Webers are looking at a price tag upward of $3 million, with costs pushed higher and higher as supply chain issues create turmoil for the costs of lumber, steel and other materials.
“We’re trying to juggle inflation,” said Christian Weber. “The world is costing more than when we started costing this project out, but we’re hoping to still break ground this summer. We’re going to hit the ground running as fast as we can, and as well as the world dictates.”
It’s unclear what the timeline will look like once ground breaks. The new property, 62-64 Saratoga Ave., has three buildings, including two rental family dwellings. One of those houses will be demolished after the residents move out, but the other will stay after the Webers’ new vision is complete. The property is selling to the Webers for $400,000.
The two properties are separated by West Marion Avenue, a dead-end road that leads to a park-and-ride spot, as well as the South Glens Falls Police Department. The road is essentially a busy, multi-use parking lot, but the Common Roots crew says it’s been nothing but support from next door.
“We love our neighbors here, so we’re really happy to be right in the village, to have the emergency workers so close by,” said Christian. “First of all, they’re great customers, and they’re part of our community, too.”
Soon, the shared road will be bigger, too, to make room. Common Roots will work with the village of South Glens Falls to have the road widened once they take control of the new property.
It’s far from the first move for Common Roots. After the 2019 fire, while the current brewery and taproom was being built, Common Roots operated a temporary taproom just up the road at 30 Saratoga Ave. Beers served there were brewed with help from other local breweries in the surrounding region.
That kind of support has never really stopped for Common Roots ever since. The expansion was on the Webers’ minds before the fire, and even then, there was some idle conversation about eventually obtaining the space next door. Whether the business would have moved up to its current scale so quickly, though, is another matter.
“The company’s growth trajectory has been such that it’s all good news for us,” said Bert. “We’re just trying to keep up with demand here. Being across the street just made sense.”