Unless Its Customers Can Save It, Murray Street Coffee May Close Its Doors On Monday.

After nine years of establishing itself as a neighborhood hangout and a home-away-from-home for Deep Ellum's caffeine-deprived residents, Murray Street Coffee Shop is in something of a tough spot.

On Wednesday afternoon, the shop's landlord gave owners Doug and Liz Davis notice that, if they didn't pay off a roughly $10,000 debt by Monday, the shop will be forced to close.

“Basically, a few years ago, I went through a period of unemployment and the economy was down, and we fell a few months behind on rent at the coffee shop, which we've been slowly paying off,” Doug says. “But not quickly enough, apparently. On top of that, what we didn't realize — and what we haven't been kept advised of by our landlords — is that they've been accruing other debts to our account, tied to, for example, annual taxes.”

And so the Davis' find themselves tasked with raising the five-figure deficit they've accrued in just a matter of days. For Doug, who is quick to point out how understanding the shop's landlord had been previously, the short notice is the hardest part to wrap his head around.

“That's the biggest unexplained part to me, frankly,” he says. “Because it's not only a short notice, but we were sort of robbed of a third of it because they didn't present it in a formal way or give us a head's up a week ago or anything. My initial concern was that maybe there was some other underlying, more sinister thing going on here. I've asked them that point blank and they said, 'No, basically, we just want you to square the account. We think we can lease the place for more than you pay, and it just comes down to a business decision.' I'm not trying to cast these guys as villains; they were more than generous when we need it a few years ago. I just wish they handled this a little bit differently.”

For now, the Davises are trying to remain optimistic that they'll be able to rally the community to buy enough prepaid coffee cards today and tomorrow to help keep the shop open for the time being. They've also set up a crowd-funding site to raise additional funds.

SEE ALSO: ON A ROLL. // Deep Ellum's Favorite Barista is Also the No. 1-Ranked Female Slalom Skateboarder in the World.

In any case, says Doug, he doesn't think of the prepaid card sales as just a short-term solution to a long-term problem. He's also confident, he says, that if Murray Street is able to meets its goal of $10,000 by the landlord's deadline of noon on Monday, November 10, money troubles won't necessarily hamper the shop's future in the long term.

Says Davis: “The shop is, in most ways, doing financially better than it has ever been, because we tuned up our operation and because the neighborhood is rebounding. We're on steady footing. I think we're in good shape, frankly. I think that people are pretty sensitive to the situation. And the sort of organic flow of customers is such that not everybody is going to come in the next month and not spend a cent because they bought coffee cards.”

Photos 1, 2 and 4 by Kathy Tran. Photo 3 by Bruno.

6146_2

6146_3

6146_4

6146_5

6146_6

6146_7

6146_8

6146_9

6146_10

6146_11

6146_12

6146_13

6146_14

6146_15

6146_16

6146_17

6146_18

6146_19

6146_20

6146_21

6146_22

6146_23

6146_24

6146_25

6146_26

6146_27

6146_28

6146_29

6146_30

6146_31

6146_32

6146_33

6146_34

6146_35

6146_36

6146_37

6146_38

6146_39

6146_40

6146_41

6146_42

6146_43

6146_44

6146_45

6146_46

6146_47

6146_48

6146_49

6146_50

No more articles
X