Olive Garden is planning to rebuild a Monroe, Louisiana restaurant that was recently destroyed by fire.
According to authorities, the fire that worked its way along the roof of the sit-down restaurant resulted in the building’s destruction. However, Olive Garden officials recently said they fully intend to rebuild the location in the very near future.
Chief Terry Williams said the fire began after water found its way into the restaurant’s electrical panel. Although Olive Garden was open for lunch when the blaze started, employees and patrons managed to exit the building without injury. Firefighters worked until late Tuesday evening to extinguish the fire.
While parent company Darden begins rebuilding the destroyed Monroe location, the 150 employees will move to other restaurants for work. In addition to Olive Garden, Darden also owns Longhorn Steakhouse. The company said they intend to revisit the site very soon.
“First and foremost, we are extremely thankful no one was injured in the fire, and we are grateful for the efforts of all the first responders involved. Olive Garden remains committed to the Monroe community, and we plan to rebuild this restaurant,” Olive Garden general manager Bryan Gibbs explained.
Gibbs added, “Right now. the well-being of our team members is our number one priority. With help from other Darden restaurants in Monroe, we are offering job placement support to all of the employees who were affected. When we do re-open, our current Olive Garden team members will be welcomed back.”
Check out images of the Olive Garden fire below.
Olive Garden been on fire for bout 1hr 30mins pic.twitter.com/wrzhkw8hpK
— ARCH (@2GunnahDRE) January 21, 2014
Photo: Monroe Fire Department responds to fire at Olive Garden near Pecanland Mall. pic.twitter.com/4XMku7cITG
— Dacia Idom (@daciaidom) January 21, 2014
— Dacia Idom (@daciaidom) January 22, 2014
Although Darden intends to rebuild the Olive Garden restaurant in Monroe, Louisiana, employees and customers may have to wait several months before the location opens its doors for business once again. According to KNOE, the company hopes to have everything ready to roll by Christmas of 2014.
“We’re saddened by the fire at Olive Garden. We want to let you know that we, as a city, are here to help you and support you in whatever way that we can. I’m very, very appreciative to the fact that our men and women from the Monroe Fire Department came there under the leadership of Chief Williams to do everything that they could to support [the restaurant],” Mayor Jamie Mayo explained during Wednesday’s press conference.
[Top Image via Wikimedia Commons]