South Congress business closes after nearly 30 years

Several businesses on South Congress are closing their doors for good. One of those is retailer Mi Casa Gallery.

Mi Casa Gallery has been on South Congress for nearly three decades. The owner said after 28 years, he was not offered the opportunity to renew the lease, and instead, another business would be taking over.

"I feel disappointed like a part of Austin is gone," says shopper Alec Ochoa Razo.

After nearly three decades on South Congress, Mi Casa Gallery permanently closed its doors on April 28. The owner, Bruce Silsby, says he opened a new store in Johnson City called Camino on May 17.

"I crossed the street, walked up, and I saw that it wasn't there, and I was really upset honestly," says Ochoa Razo.

According to the owner of Mi Casa Gallery, Woodland Properties did not offer the business the opportunity to renew its lease and is allowing another company to lease the space.

"When we see closures and relocations of our neighboring businesses, I have been down here since the late 90s, I have seen a lot of old friends come and go over this year’s, so it is always regrettable, but you also see others come to fill their place," says Owner of Big Top Candy Shop and Monkey See Monkey Do toy store Brandon Hodge.

Brandon Hodge owns two stores on South Congress. He witnessed his neighboring business, Mi Casa Gallery, close last month, and Good Company close this month.

His stores are across the street from the Sunroom, which will close on Saturday, June 1.

MORE: South Congress store to close after 28 years

"We are fortunate on South Congress that we rarely have vacancies for long right, so it is still one of the hottest places to be and not only in Austin but in the country," says Hodge.

"If it is something like Mi Casa where they were not available to keep their doors open or renew their lease and that was not an opportunity given to them, that makes me upset. If they are being bought out, that is like my biggest issue with all these different places closing," says Ochoa Razo.

Business owner Brandon Hodge says this allows other businesses to experience the retail industry on South Congress.

"I would say to businesses looking to open on South Congress to really bring their A-game," says Hodge.