By Mike Harris – Special to The Alpine Mountaineer
Editor’s note: This is the first of what will be ongoing reports about the rebuilding of Goodwin and Son’s Market.
Demolition and debris removal at Goodwin’s Market is the number one priority right now, Mike Johnstone, vice president and general manager, told The Alpine Mountaineer but fresh rain and snowstorms continue to plague operations.
“(Last week) snow shut us down Tuesday through Wednesday so we lost three days for cleanup but we got back to it on Friday,” Johnstone said. “Demolition crews were here Saturday to continue removal efforts.”
The demolition and cleanup crew hired by Goodwin’s has been working for two weeks. The roof of Goodwin & Son’s Market caved in on March 1.
According to Ron Chalfont, owner of the website LakeGregoryWeather.com, another storm was headed for us at the beginning of this week.
“Tuesday night (March 28) the next weather system will begin to impact our area with low elevation snow, gusty winds and fog along the Rim,” he explained on his website. “As it looks now, this will begin late Tuesday night lasting through Friday before it eventually gets out of here. Snow levels are looking like they will be around the 3,000-foot level at times throughout the storm.”
Johnstone said that, even with that, he expects the demolition crew to finish their work on cleanup of the inside of the store and the parking lot at Goodwin’s by early this week.
“Once we get that done, we can bring in the engineers so we can start inspecting all the walls,” he said. “A preliminary report shows there’s a little bit of damage but we’re hoping they can be repaired and the walls can stay.”
Right behind Goodwin’s cleanup priority is a second priority, he said.
“We have been in a discovery phase for building a team made up of architects, engineers and designers,” he explained. “We have been spending our days interviewing people to fill that team. We want a team that fits our vision for what we want for this store and for the community.”
Johnstone is also hoping to start cleanup work on the lower level where management offices, a conference room and the bakery were located.
“There was a lot of water damage downstairs,” he added. Johnstone said he and other members of the family were able to “get a lot of the old family photos out of there.”
Johnstone also wanted to thank the town for its support.
“A lot of people have been very supportive – the whole community has been great,” he said. “And we’ve had a lot of new customers at our Redlands and Riverside stores. It’s really been a nice thing for us.”
Johnstone said Goodwin’s has been getting a lot of help from the county and from 3rd District Supervisor Dawn Rowe. “She has been very helpful and gave us key support at county Building and Safety.”
Suggestions that a pop-up grocery store might be created in the old Oak Trunk store next to the Crestline post office may be looked at but Johnstone noted that right now the focus is on cleanup and putting together a team of architects, engineers and designers.
“Just know this,” he added. “This store will be rebuilt. We plan to build a beautiful store for the community.”