Black Butte Ranch Lodge comes down
Last updated 12/8/2021 at Noon
Black Butte Ranch (BBR) is bidding adieu to its original lodge, built over 50 years ago. After several renovations it was clear it was time to start over and create a space and experience only possible by removing the original structure. The decision wasn’t an easy one. For those who grew up coming to the Ranch or who call it home, imagining the drive in without the iconic building is hard to comprehend. The family dinners, morning coffees and weddings enjoyed in and around the building will have to live on in memory alone.
Shawn McCance, the CFO and interim CEO for the Ranch, has been a part of the Lodge project for many years. McCance took the helm when the former general manager, Jay Head, left for a new position three months ago. While a BBR hiring subcommittee interviews six candidates for Head’s job, McCance is moving the reconstruction forward and navigating the many challenges of a project of this magnitude. As often happens with construction projects of this size and scope, a delay pushed back the original start date for demolition of the Lodge.
“In a nutshell, the project was more expensive than originally estimated,” said McCance. Inflation and supply-chain problems have made it hard to get construction materials.
“In Central Oregon that was exacerbated due to a lack of employees,” said McCance.
But hurdles weren’t going to halt progress for long.
“The homeowners rallied around the project
and came back and said not only do we want the project but we’re willing to spend more money for it. It came back with a 71-percent yes vote. So here we are today,” said McCance.
The project now carries a $19.5 million price tag.
Kirby Nagelhout Construction Company is the general contractor for the project. Completion dates have moved, indicating it a 13-month versus 12-month time frame. Project managers are hoping it will be finished by Christmas 2023.
“We can’t know for sure, with unknown variables like weather,” said McCance. “We will begin booking weddings and other events by February 2023. It should be open for homeowners in the restaurant and bar in January.”
McCance said they salvaged what they could from the Lodge. Custom iron- work, larger beams, fir moldings, and the tree in the middle will be repurposed. How and where the items will end up is still being discussed.
During construction, Robert’s Pub has become the Ranch dinner venue.
“They’re producing an elevated dinner product in a smaller kitchen, which can be challenging. But they’ve done it before. The Pub will expand to lunch service once the golf course reopens. The Lakeside Bistro will be open for breakfast and lunch,” McCance said.
“I think it’s going to be perhaps the nicest dining venue in Central Oregon,” he said. “I’m really excited about it. I see it surpassing even its own amazing, spectacular setting. The floor to ceiling windows will have views that will be amazing. It’s going to be spectacular when it’s done.”