The Black Dog Bakery on Water Street in Vineyard Haven closed Jan. 2 to prepare for extensive renovations, and will reopen sometime in late February.
According to bakery manager Chris LaPointe, the building has been exposed to frequent flooding and wet conditions, causing rot in some of the flooring and walls.
To mitigate future flood damage, LaPointe said the wood floor will be replaced with concrete and will be raised 12 inches from the previous height.
The front wall of the building will be entirely redone, with two double doors in the center to increase accessibility.
LaPointe said the sidewalk area in front of the bakery will be raised to meet the height of the new floors, and also make the bakery more handicap-accessible.
“I see people in wheelchairs trying to get into the doors, and sometimes people trip or lose their footing on that sidewalk,” LaPointe said. “I knew something had to be done.”
The siding work will be done by the Offshore Shingle company.
LaPointe noted the number of severe-weather events in past years, and the fact that Vineyard Haven Harbor and nearby businesses “take a beating” during each storm season.
“We want to alleviate that floodplain and make it so we don’t have to deal with water damage in the future,” LaPointe said.
And the bakery won’t just be making structural alterations; LaPointe said new aesthetic touches will make the inside of the building look cleaner, while preserving the original Black Dog motif.
“These are the biggest major changes we have ever done,” he said. “It’s gonna look a lot different.”
Plans for aesthetic changes include new countertops, new displays and cases for goodies, new retail displays, and an overhauled menu.
“I’m really excited for all these changes,” LaPointe said. “It’s all for the customers; we know everyone will really enjoy it.”