By Jeff Danna
2:11 PM CDT, June 4, 2012
Owners of a long-time furniture store in the Lincoln Park area which was destroyed last week in a multi-alarm fire said today that they planned to rebuild, according to a spokeswoman.
Standing in front of the rubble where Roy's Home Furnishings stood, marketing director Johanna Parra said the owners plan to rebuild the store on the same site in the 2400 block of North Sheffield Avenue and re-open by late summer or early fall.
In the meantime, the owners are searching for a temporary storefront to lease in the same Lincoln Park area, and continue to run the business out of their warehouse at 2315 W. 27th St., in the Pilsen area, said Parra.
“Rest assured to all our customers, we are still operating,” she said. “Deliveries are still going as planned. There’s not going to be any delay because of the fire.”
The building was nearly demolished Monday afternoon. Chunks of concrete and twisted metal beams lay on the site, which was surrounded by a chain-link fence. A section of the building adjacent to the CTA Red Line and Brown Line tracks would be razed as soon as the business owners were assured it could be done safely and without disturbing rail service, Parra said.
Owner Roy Warner Jr. wasn’t present for Monday’s announcement, but Parra said he was grateful to the community for its support during a difficult time.
Roy’s employees would continue to work at the warehouse until the Lincoln Park store reopens, said Parra. She said all the employees were still a bit shaken. They refused to comment.
“It was all so sudden,” Parra said. “Being here at the site at this moment is kind of breathtaking, heartbreaking.”
Word of Roy’s announcement came as a relief to Lincoln Park residents, who said that after three decades in the neighborhood, Roy’s has become a staple of the community.
“I’m sure they’ll be back,” said Bion Chen, 43, who lives in nearby in the 900 block of Webster Place.
Chen said he had heard rumblings about a fire in the area, but he was shocked to find out it was Roy’s. He said he owns a chair he bought from the store.
Curt Kalousek, 34, moved into the building next door to Roy’s about a month ago, and he had just become acquainted with the neighborhood business.
“When you’re just moving in, it’s easy to just walk in and go, ‘That’s nice,’” he said.
Kalousek said he and his fiancée were home when the fire broke out May 30 and they saw firefighters respond to the blaze.
“It went up pretty quick,” he said, adding that winds seemed to worsen the blaze. “It was like pouring gas on the fire.”
Chicago Fire Department officials have said the fire was an accident and possibly caused by a cigarette not properly extinguished.
Copyright © 2014 Chicago Tribune Company, LLC