LAKEVIEW — Chicago Bagel Authority's Belmont location reopened Monday, months after a tanning bed fire damaged the building last year.
A tanning bed fire burned several businesses at the southeast corner of Belmont and Sheffield last September. Chicago Bagel Authority, 955 W. Belmont Ave., first expected to be back in business by December, and then by March. But insurance complications and repair of the building's smoke damage delayed its return by nearly 10 months.
In the interim, owner Greg Gibbs promoted the original location of CBA, 953 W. Armitage Ave., where the delivery boundaries temporarily expanded to include Belmont's territory.
Employees worked at Armitage and took odd jobs up until about a month ago, when they started preparing Belmont for a reopening, said employee Pat Rourke. Gibbs and another employee built new shelving by hand, and a fresh coat of paint makes the location feel better then it did before the fire, Rourke said.
Monday was slow and steady as old customers returned, he said.
"We're ready for people to come in," he said.
Milios Hair Salon, Ultimate Exposure Tanning and clothing boutique Never Mind also shuttered temporarily after the fire.
Milios' stylists have been taking appointments and borrowing space in other salons, while Never Mind's Jina Park moved to 3240 N. Clark St.
California-based chain Blaze Pizza expects to open in Never Mind's former spot at 935 W. Belmont Ave. by October.