Flood cleanup continues in Woodstock

Anthony Andriola, owner of Spring House Tavern in Woodstock, stands inside this section of dining area that is under renovation after a flash flood damaged the restaurant in July. Rich Cooley/Daily
Kenn Sadler, 1st vice commander and finance manager of the American Legion Post 199 in Woodstock, talks on his cell phone in the downstairs club room of their post headquarters at the corner of Muhlenberg and South Streets. Last month's flood damaged the walls and floors, and repairs are slowly being made. Rich Cooley/Daily

WOODSTOCK — More than a month after heavy rains flooded downtown, businesses and organizations are still trying to recover from extensive damages.

The July 13 flood caused an estimated $2.6 million in damages to businesses along Main Street.

The Spring House Tavern, for example, is remodeling and upgrading its interior.

Tavern operations manager Chris Bennett said, “In a series of not-great events, it forces us to remodel, which we were a little long overdue for.”

The tavern is working with a team of contractors to restore the building and upgrade its interior with new wall panels as well as a new bar.

Owner Anthony Andriola said the building has flood insurance, but he is waiting to receive the coverage from the estimate that came in last week – which means that all of the restorations are being handled out-of-pocket.

Andriola said they have spent around $80,000 on renovations since July 13.

The tavern has been closed since the flood, which Andriola said is the worst he has seen in his time as owner of the tavern. It was also the first time he has seen flood waters inside the tavern.

“A real little bit of water came in during (Hurricane) Sandy,” Andriola said, noting that last month’s flood was worse than the devastating 2012 hurricane. In July, Andriola said the tavern had as much as 23 inches of water inside the building.

After stripping away the damaged portions in the interior, Andriola said they decided that upgrading the tavern was less expensive than hiring a hygienic engineer to restore the old wood floor and wall panels.

Any new wall installations have to either receive pressurized treatment or a spray treatment against fungus or contaminants, Andriola said.

He noted that he is making the building “flood proof” with 4-feet-high rubber that will surround the base of the building’s exterior.

The finished upgrades, Andriola said, will include a new aesthetic look for the tavern with the same basic dining layout as before — aside from a second bar in the dining room.

“That back room was basically a storage room and had nothing going on,” Andriola said. “We had to rip all of that out because everything was damaged.”

Once the construction work inside of the Spring House Tavern is complete, Andriola said the building has to be inspected and approved by an inspector from the Virginia Department of Health.

Andriola said they are hoping to finish the restoration by the first week of September.

Muhlenberg Post 199 of the American Legion, located off of Muhlenberg Street, has been seeking donations and volunteers to help in restoring the post’s downstairs club room that was damaged during the flood.

The club room’s floor, walls, carpet and some of the doors were damaged.  In addition, the gravel in the post’s parking lot was washed away by the flood waters.

Kenn Sadler, the post’s first vice commander, said the post’s water pumps could not keep up with the amount of water that rushed into the building.

Post Commander Doug Seibert said, “When it was discovered, there was carpet down at the time. It was completely and totally soaked.”

Since the post is not able to use the club room now, all regular activities and meetings that were held there have been moved to the upstairs hall.

Sadler said they received $25,000 in flood insurance money, but they spent $7,200 on a restoration company to soak up the water after the flood.

With machines like dehumidifiers running for 72-hours straight, however, Sadler said the post has incurred sizeable electric bills. Last week, Seibert estimated that the carpet replacement installation could run between $8,000 and $10,000.

“It’s depleting funds very, very quickly,” Sadler said.

“We have not had any outside contractors,” he said. “They are in business to make money, and we just don’t have that to pay for it and do what else we do for the community.”

Which is why, Sadler explained, the post is calling for donations from the public. On Monday, he said the legion has seen a some responses.

“We’re still trying to get some decent quotes on flooring,” Sadler said. “Then have some somebody make that decision as to which way we’re going with it.”

Contact staff writer Kevin Green at 540-465-5137 ext. 155, or kgreen@nvdaily.com

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