Edgartown Bank would replace Oyster Bar Grill with branch office

An illustration of the proposed new building submitted to the Martha's Vineyard Commission.
Photo courtesy of MVC

An illustration of the proposed new building submitted to the Martha's Vineyard Commission.

The Edgartown National Bank plans to build a new branch at 57 Circuit Avenue in Oak Bluffs, on property the bank seized as part of foreclosure proceedings against the owners of The Oyster Bar Grill.

The bank intends to demolish the former bar and restaurant, and build a three-story building that includes a bank branch, retail space and four townhouse condominium apartments, according to a plan submitted to the Martha’s Vineyard Commission (MVC).

The footprint of the proposed development is 3,225 square feet, the largest building allowed by current zoning regulations.

It would have a basement, and each of the two-story townhouses would have two bedrooms and a roof-top deck.

Oak Bluffs building inspector Jim Dunn referred the project to the commission because it triggers several provisions of the DRI checklist, including a development larger than 2,000 square feet, four or more mixed residential and commercial units, and demolition in a business district.

The building was vacant for most of last summer. The building dates to the 1880s or 90s, according to the MVC staff report. It was once the site of the town library, and it has been a restaurant since at least 1967.

A 2007 proposal to renovate the building into a function hall with apartments on an upper floor ran into opposition during MVC review, and was eventually withdrawn.

The latest proposal has also drawn criticism.

“Abutters have expressed concerns over noise, odors, parking, congestion, and crowds,” the MVC staff wrote in its report.

The commission’s land use planning committee considered the application on March 23. A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for April 26.