A Dearman's return to Bocage is months away, if a new lease is granted
BATON ROUGE - It could be months before sodas and burgers can be ordered from Dearman's following a devastating fire at the popular eatery last week, though, the exact fate of the business remains unclear.
Property owners don't expect to have renovations complete on the restaurant space until June, which is also when the lease for the restaurant ends, a source told WBRZ Tuesday. The owners of Dearman's lease space in Bocage Village on Jefferson Highway. The area leased by Dearman's was heavily damaged by a fire that broke out in a storage area of the restaurant. Other stores in the shopping center sustained smoke damage.
Restaurant owners and property managers met Tuesday to discuss the future of the site, but no contract extension has been granted.
Mitch Richardson, of the property management company, said there are on-going discussions with Dearman's but the shopping center's priority is getting the space cleaned up and renovated and helping other businesses clean smoke damage from occupied areas.
It's still not clear what sparked the blaze. The fire department estimated the fire caused about $300,000 worth of damage to the building and an additional $200,000 worth of damage to the contents.
Richardson said insurance companies from the businesses involved were just beginning work on private investigations into the fire, assessing damage and determining how to move forward with renovations.
In an earlier conversation Tuesday, a Dearman's manager said he was not privy to lease conversations. Dearman's has not returned subsequent calls for comment for this story.
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