Berkley Book Corner fills Borders void in downtown Berkley

Another book-loving entrepreneur has opened a bookstore to fill the void left by Borders' bankruptcy.

Vic Wooddell brought The Berkley Book Corner to downtown Berkley about three weeks ago and says he gets thanks on a regular basis from former Borders customers.

"Everybody comes in and says how sad they are that Borders closed and they're happy to see I'm here," he says. Berkley residents had two Borders within three miles of downtown. Wooddell likes to let them know that he picked up his bookshelves from Border's liquidation.

Opening a bookstore "was an idea we had been tossing around for awhile."

When he was laid off from over the summer his job as a business professor at Wayne State University due to state budget cuts, the idea heated up. And once Borders closed, "it was the perfect time," he says.

The Berkley Book Corner sells new and gently used books, and offers a children's area and lounge for adults.

"It's going very well. We've had a good couple of week. Of course it's the Christmas purchasing season, but we're getting a lot of positive feedback that people are happy we're here," he says.

Other entrepreneurs in Mount Clemens, Royal Oak and other metro Detroit cities felt the same and have opened their own independent bookstores.

The Berkley Book Corner fills in a vacant spot previously occupied by a PO Box store, bringing the sort of traffic that makes downtown a place to stroll and lounge.

"A lot of my customers are walk-in because they go to the bakery nearby…or they get a coffee," he says. "We fit in with that."

Source: Vic Wooddell, owner, The Berkley Book Corner
Writer: Kim North Shine