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Defunct Building 19 to reinvent itself as a rug store

Bill Elovitz said he began buying rugs because it let him “deal with beautiful things.”
Bill Elovitz said he began buying rugs because it let him “deal with beautiful things.”Photos by Jonathan Wiggs/Globe staff

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Building 19, the retail chain that sold “good stuff cheap,” may be in the middle of bankruptcy proceedings, but that isn’t stopping the company from trying to reinvent itself.

No, the stores won’t again be selling any of the oddball items they used to feature, such as windows from Boston’s John Hancock Tower or two-piece suits — jackets and vests only. At least not for now. In its new incarnation, the company plans to operate as The Rug Department, offering a variety of Oriental rugs and some mattresses.

Two of the stores will be located in former Building 19s in Norwood and Burlington. A third may end up in Norwell.

“Every time I walk in, all I can say is wow!” said owner Bill Elovitz, referring to the 90,000-square-foot Norwood location, which is scheduled to have a soft opening Saturday.

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