Brewery takes space in former Butterball building

LONGMONT – The former Butterball turkey plant site in downtown Longmont has inked a new business tenant just as developers get ready to demolish the main building at 150 Main St. to make way for a 250-unit apartment project.

Wibby Brewing Co., which BizWest reported last week has plans to open by early next year, has signed a lease for the 8,300-square-foot building at 201 Emery St., at the northwest corner of 2nd Avenue and Emery.

The building is just across the street from the main plant.

A development group with in-state and out-of-state ties bought the plant – including multiple buildings spread out across 27.5 acres – for $4.5 million from Butterball in June. A few days later, a court dismissed a lawsuit aimed at the city by Butterball alleging that Longmont’s rezoning of the property to mixed use had hampered the company’s ability to sell the plant to another food producer or other industrial user.

The plant closed its doors in 2011.

Representatives for the developers could not be reached Tuesday afternoon.

Ted Risk, one of two Wibby co-founders, said the building at 201 Emery was a former mechanical garage for trucks. He said Wibby is working with an architect on floor plans, but said the brewery will include a taproom of about 2,000 square feet as well as an outdoor patio space.

“A lot of the improvements we have to make to have a production facility are already in place,” Risk said, referring to things like drains and proper sloping of the floors. “But we have a lot of work to do to bring it up to code.”

Wibby is aiming for an opening sometime toward the end of the first quarter next year.

Risk said Wibby has discussed a couple of different grants with the city and the Longmont Downtown Development Authority that it could be eligible for in locating in the area. But nothing has been finalized on that front.

“We couldn’t be more excited,” Risk said.

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