BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD) — Lil Beaver Brewery in Bloomington is planning to expand its business with a new building Wednesday after spending a year upgrading their equipment.
Co-owner Justin Bellas said the company acquired a new building to expand into but were not able to get the plans approved in time to start construction until this spring. As far as expansion goes, he said this is only the beginning.
“The patio and parking lot were just the first step in our expansion,” Justin said. “We’re so excited to announce the next phase of the project, which is moving into the adjacent unit at the 16 Currency Drive location, which was previously occupied by a rental company until April of this year.”
A press release included digital renderings of what the business will look like after the expansion. the city of Bloomington is currently reviewing those plans before giving the green light on construction.
Co-owner and head brewer Chad Bevers said he is grateful that the company’s customers continued to buy from them throughout the pandemic.
“I’m not going to lie, I was extremely concerned about the fate of this company when the COVID-19 closures started,” Bevers said.
“Fortunately, we have an amazing customer base, including the individuals that buy directly from us at our brewery taproom, as well as the 150-plus retail partners we have throughout Illinois. As a result, the demand for our unique beers has never been higher, and we’re honestly at a point where we’re selling out of nearly every beer we package within just a few days, it’s quite exciting at LBB right now!”
Co-owner Adam Bellas said due to those sales and the amount of beer they have been producing, the company needed to expand.
“We’ve outgrown the space we’re in, both for customer seating as well as production,” Adam said. “Our only limiting factor right now from us selling more beer is us producing more beer. By building a new space for our customers, we’ll also be freeing up space for more brewery equipment, which will ultimately allow us to double our recently-doubled capacity.”
Once the buildout is complete, the brewery will include a full kitchen to provide food for lunch and dinner. Many considerations were taken into account with the limitations of the existing building, Some of the considerations for what the new space will hold include a mezzanine area serving as an observation deck, a private video gaming area, and a “barrel room” for private parties that will seat up to 40 people.
Lil Beaver Brewery previously opened a patio space with an additional parking lot on the east side of the street, putting the brewery between Finance and Currency Drive with entrances on both sides. The patio includes a bar that was custom-made from a shipping container and houses 8 beer taps for outdoor service.
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