We acquired 29 W. 16th (Petrino’s) in late 2012 through a partnership with the City of Holland. At that time it was a neglected building in a struggling commercial corridor. Our commitment to make it a good “looking” and good “doing” building is why the city and other partners have joined us in the transformation of this building. We desire for the downstairs to remain a vibrant business and are actively rehabbing the upstairs for our main office and the neighborhood. For the first few years, our work was labor intensive but with minimal cost. In 2015, we began more aggressive fundraising and rehab of the entire exterior and upstairs. We are now looking for partners to help finish the project and are deeply grateful to Holland City Council, Community Foundation of the Holland Zeeland Area, Homecor, Macatawa Technologies, Ridge Point Community Church, SMARTci Systems, and First Reformed Church –the organizations that have already partnered with us on this project.
The Story behind the Project
written by: Megan Bauer and Sayde Anderson (Summer Interns)
People who are transformed, transform the space they enter. Since 2006, 3sixty has been working toward the transformation of the Holland community from the inside out through intentional relationships and practical projects.
3sixty is a neighbor led non-profit, based in Holland MI, founded by executive director-Father Brian Wolthuis. Today, 3sixty is a diverse network of neighbors serving together who believe in (and rely upon) Christ’s transformative power, which flows through their neighborhood relationships and projects.
“The cool part about an organization that is really vested in the neighborhood is not only do they do infrastructure sort of things but they build relationships which is more difficult for a city as an organization because we build roads and sewers. We just don’t have the resources and manpower to really get invested in neighborhoods,” said Dave Hoekstra with the City of Holland.
Their latest project is a large-scale rehab on the local pizzeria, Petrino’s and transformation is written all over it.
In late 2012, in partnership with the City of Holland, 3sixty was given a generous donation enabling them to purchase a neglected, mixed-use, commercial building at 29 West 16th Street in the midst of their target neighborhood. It was initially made possible by a family who believes in the work that 3sixty participates in and other generous donations and grants.
The goal for this building is to return it to full function, making it an attractive, multi-use “hub” from which the work of 3sixty can expand.
The building currently houses Petrino’s Pizzeria on the main floor and has two small, condemned and unused upstairs apartments. They have begun to completely renovate the building inside and out. With the first floor as a thriving retail business, they are renovating the second floor into an improved office space for 3sixty.
“One of the delights of having this property is the relationship we built with Pete, the owner of Petrino’s. It was pretty clear in the beginning that Pete was accustomed to a more traditional landlord tenant relationship with a landlord that is primary running a business. Well we’re not a business and we don’t own this property for business purposes. We own it for what’s best for the neighborhood so we told Pete from the beginning and consistently that we actually want his business to thrive and we want to be the kind of landlord that takes care of him and the property and that makes great decisions and helps him succeed in the neighborhood. We’ve even arranged to receive part of our monthly rent in pizza credit so we can share the love of pizza with volunteers and other friends in the neighborhood.”
Pete has an equal level of enthusiasm toward the project and what it means for himself to be a part of the work that will be done in the building as a whole. Personally, he sees Petrino’s as a neighborhood pizzeria for all members of the community to come and connect.
“Our improvements on the exterior have caused Pete to begin looking at remodeling the interior as well so before too long the entire building is going to be transformed,” said Brain Wolthuis.
Ron Wolthuis, Bill VanHauken, and Rich Herbig are all faithful retirees who volunteer their time and energy every week because they believe in the work that is 3sixty does and in the individual neighbors whose lives are a testimony of hope in the midst of hardships.
“I’m a part of what’s known as the Friday Crew. It’s a group of retired guys like myself who feel that retirement is a time when we can use whatever gifts and talents we have been blessed with to bless somebody or something else,” said Ron Wolthuis.
The transformative power of this space is well on its way thanks to the Friday crew.
“I think the reward is getting done at the end of the day and feeling like I’ve accomplished something. Being retired, I could just sit on the back deck and read a book or watch TV or spend my time in a more selfish way. This feels like I’m giving myself to something that really went well,” said Rich.
“I see that Petrino’s will very soon become a landmark of renewal in that part of the central city. When it’s done people will be able to look at it and say, ‘Aha, now we can begin to see why it’s worthwhile putting time and energy and resources into that part of the central city.’ I see the potential of renewal of the inner city from the inside out. If we can make the inner city a vibrant part of the community of Holland everybody wins in that context,” added Ron Wolthuis.
With that said, the property is strategically located to be an evermore-faithful presence of the church in the central city of Holland.
“Now that we step back and think about it this building is located in the center of the central neighborhoods. It’s just blocks from city hall, blocks from the library, blocks from Hope College and right in the middle of a residential neighborhood in the midst of a small commercial corridor. We feel like we lucked in perhaps or the providence of God placed us within the exact right location to be an asset to the neighborhood and to us for years to come,” said Brian Wolthuis.
Every piece of the project is a part of the greater goal to bring the kingdom work to the community. Specifically, the location is fundamental to the missional work of 3sixty.
On the busy corner of River Avenue and 16th Street, it is located in the most diverse neighborhood of Holland, which runs the gamut from lovingly restored Historic District homes, to distressed low-income rentals & college student housing.
Given the strategic location, the building will provide a new opportunity for the organization to reach a much larger and more diverse group of neighbors with the love of Christ, while building upon what 3sixty has already been doing for many years.
The upstairs will become a new office for 3sixty and a resource for many in the neighborhood, allowing them to now offer computer access, laundry, classes, and many neighborhood meetings.
“As our organization has grown, our office needs have as well. Currently, our donated office (basically a really nice garage) supports three paid staff, two volunteer staff, and multiple interns, and occasional neighbors. From our office, we coordinate with dozens of other organizations and literally hundreds of neighbors and volunteers through appointments and drop-in relationships,” said Brian Wolthuis.
It is truly the hub of communications and planning, enabling all 3sixty does. This new location will much better suit the needs of 3sixty and increase the effectiveness of their kingdom work.
Overall, the goal for this building is to return it to full function, making it an attractive, multi-use “hub” from which the work of 3sixty can expand.
“We talk a lot about the analogy of teaching a person how to fish and how it is far better than giving them the fish. I think that’s what we are doing here. We are really helping people acquire and learn the tools to help people take good care of their own property. Now we will have a viable work apace and education space right in the middle of the neighborhood to do just that,” said Brian Wolthuis
“We strive for excellence in all the projects that we do which is a bit of a challenge when you are working with volunteers and seemingly not sufficient donations, but consistently God allows us the provision to do excellent work. We are very thankful for all the partnerships that we have, but we are still a bit short of being able to finish the interior office space and make it fully furnished and completed. Our goal is by this year’s snowfall that we can occupy [the new space] as a fully functional office,” said Brian Wolthuis.
If you are interested in donating to help this project see completion you can do so using the link below. If you shop on amazon.com consider using AmazonSmile and 3sixty will receive a portion of your purchase amount!