Submitted by: Rick Melendrez in Texas1:56pm Jul 21 2011

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A "Dollar Bookstore" Anywhere Downtown San Antonio

My idea to improve this place

Downtown SA needs a affordable quality used bookstore

So that people could... 

Downtown SA needs a affordable quality used bookstore. Many of us still remember Brock's Books a San Antonio landmark that was located at 312 E. Commerce. The store closed in 1987. The store was a treasury of books for the entire family.

Here is the concept for a downtown bookstore that would be attractive to all;

Unlike other used bookstores in SA, that charge half off,or a percentage of publishers prices, this would be a Dollar Bookstore, where all the books are priced at $1.00 or less, softcovers, hardcovers, trade paperbacks, old magazines, comic books etc.

The store would be ready to start with an inventory of over 50,000 books. All books are in Excellent Condition. An unending monthly inventory coming from West Texas.

Other merchandise would be available as well, antiques & uniques.

Bookstore would also feature a coffee bar, complimentary wifi. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to brew coffee, so why sell coffee at out of this world prices. Coffee, pastries, & even hot dogs would be priced at $1.00 or less.

The self serve coffee urn would feature a nice blend from Southern Mexico. Did I forget to mention free refills! A $1 "Build your Own Hot Dog Stand," you can garnish your red hot with fresh onions, pickles, jalapenos, sauerkraut and a special secret hot chile sauce. We already bought a hot dog roller grill that can hold 45 hot dogs at a time. Winter time.... $1 tamales! Summer time... $1 Raspas with a scoop of ice cream serve in stand alone cups. Definitely a lot of tables & comfortable chairs for your reading and snacking pleasure.

It would be a new venue for San Antonio authors & artists. A new gathering place for readings, art exhibits, non profit fundraisers, etc.

The bookstore would definitely be dog friendly, with a couple of doggie apts. Complimentary dog bones from the Pet's Barn.

Books for the whole family, nothing stupid. Kids reading area with little people furniture.

Store would be clean, especially bathrooms. I am a stickler for clean bathrooms. No shoddy merchandise. All books are in Good to Like New Condition. 95% of the softcovers & paperbacks have no spine creases. I am a picky buyer when it comes to books.

Bookstore needs to be out of the high rent district to keep costs down. Square footage would at least have to be 5,000 sq ft. plus. That's why it would have to be in a low rent district.

We looked at a building on Flores & Guadalupe street, nice old brick building, it was one of the first Piggly Wigglys in SA. Unfortunately it was too small & only street parking.

I had been eyeing the old Humble Oil Gas Station. Its as if time just left it alone and is there fighting the elements. The station is located just south of downtown. Now that place would make for a nice bookstore. It has off street & plenty of onstreet parking. But you would have to add an addition to expand. I am very interested in that property and at the same time preserving some of San Antonio's past. But that location is not in wlaking distance of downtown SA.

There are some places on Austin street just above Broadway by Maverick Park on the other side of the expressway. Beautiful old carved limestone buildings. The businesses there are mostly industrial & warehouses, some vacant but enticing for a bookstore. Austin street back in 1877 was the busiest street in San Antonio. This is where the first train depot was before it moved to Commerce street.

I would say for this bookstore to survive & thrive it would have be downtown San Antonio with plenty of pedestrian traffic.

I am most open to everyone's thoughts on this. I would definitely consider investors, but you must be a book lover! Please email me at

Rick Melendrez

Because I want San Antonio to be...

Downtown SA can be affordable to everyone with this venue.


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skip (Feb 13 2013)
Rick: there used to be an old used bookstore downtown that seemed to be as big as a city block. It had a basement with an amazing amount of used old books and magazines. I don't recall the name, though, and was wondering what happened to it.
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Rick Melendrez (Feb 23 2013)
Skip, that was Brock's Books... shut down in 1987. had the internet been as popular then, Brock would have been a millionaire. Nobody in the family was interested in the business.
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