Nip and a tuck for Piggy Market

By Andrea Tomkins –

The Piggy Market is getting a facelift on their fifth anniversary. The Market’s owners, Dave Neil and Warren Sutherland, have announced that they will be closing their doors in order to renovate.

 Dave Neil, co-owner of Westboro’s Piggy Market, is more than ready to renovate. Photo by Andrea Tomkins
Dave Neil, co-owner of Westboro’s Piggy Market, is more than ready to renovate. Photo by Andrea Tomkins

“The business has evolved quite a bit over the past five years, and we feel we’re at the point now where our space has to evolve to meet the expanded product line,” says Neil.

They’ll be going full tilt until 6:00 p.m. on December 31. Any fresh foods left in the store will be donated to the local food bank. After the doors close on New Year’s Eve they will remain closed for two months while the interior is transformed.

Their goal is to provide a more concise feel to the store and to better service their clientele.

“We are looking forward to refreshing our storefront, and are planning a grand re-opening party for April 4, 2014,” says Neil. “As always, our store focus remains on local, sustainable food, and being a part of the Ottawa food community.”

The drop ceiling will be removed, as well as some of the interior walls. The front of the store will change as well.

Neil and Sutherland adopted the space, which brought its own set of challenges because of the way it was laid out.

For many years this was the location of Simply Wood, a shop that made and sold wooden furniture. In 2007, part of it was hived off for the Westboro Market, a grocer that provided customers with fresh produce, dairy, grocery items, pastries, baking, and take home items. The Piggy Market took over part of that space five years ago.

“They’re the ones who built the kitchen in the back corner,” explains Neil. “The interior walls have never worked for us, and we’ve been working around them since we opened. To say the least, our space is confusing for customers. We need to take a break to make it the way we wanted it to be in the beginning. During the break, it will give us a chance to focus on labeling, to make it easier for customers as well,” he says.

The counter and cooler will stretch all the way across the new space, and new shelves will better showcase local products.

Some of the changes that are taking place at Piggy Market have been planned in advance of the implementation of Winston Square, which was designed to honour veterans and provide a public space along Richmond Road at Winston Avenue, adjacent to the Westboro Legion.

Although work is yet to begin, according to the Councillor’s office, this small urban park is still a go and scheduled to be completed in the spring.

Piggy Market will be adding outdoor seating as part of their renovation to fit with the new vision of this little corner of Westboro.

“The front will be totally redone, and one side will be a platform so there’ll be room for some tables and chairs,” says Neil.

When they reopen, Piggy Market will also be offering new butchery and sausage-making classes.

“We’re expanding our take-home selections as well,” says Neil. “You can come in if you don’t want to cook. Every Monday there will be a meal plan for the week, and you can pick it up hot at 5:30. It will be ready to go.”


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