Philadelphia (CBS) – Jim’s Steaks is usually packed on Saturdays, but the South Street staple is empty after Friday’s fire. Now focus on the construction and what it takes to get the grill sizzle and smell back.
CBS3 spoke with the very optimistic Jim’s Steaks owner and said he received good news.
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Despite all the damage, he told CBS3 there was no need to demolish the building after the city’s Licensing and Inspections Department inspected the property. was judged to be healthy.
But the double-alarm fires will be a major economic hit over the summer and as South Street businesses are still recovering from the pandemic and last month’s shootings.
“We were really just starting to move forward, and this happened on Friday morning,” Silver said.
Jim’s Steak, the iconic 4th and South Street cheesesteak joint that has been in business on South Street for nearly 50 years, caught fire on Friday morning.
It took hours to put out the fire with two alarms.
after two alarms #fire On Friday at the iconic Jim’s Steak on South Street, the owner said he received good news today. The building does not need to be demolished and is structurally sound. He vows to rebuild. The cause is believed to be electrical. No one was injured. @CBSPhilly pic.twitter.com/w5iC3N3SYQ
— Ryan Hughes (@HughesCBS3) July 30, 2022
An employee was inside the store when he said he saw smoke after feeling the air heat up.
Fortunately, no one was injured.
Owner Ken Silver said the culprit was likely electrical and that there was a problem with the HVAC system.
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That’s a big financial hit during the summer months when the town is full of tourists, but the owner told CBS3 it could have been much worse.
Power has been restored to nearby residents and businesses.
“Thanks to the Philadelphia firefighters and everyone involved, our building is structurally sound,” Silver said.
He has rebuilt and is scheduled to meet with the adjuster on Monday morning.
The good news is that almost all of the 3rd and 4th floors didn’t suffer much damage. Silver told Eyewitness News that old photographs, blueprints and other memorabilia of his father were also preserved.
Silver added that autographed photos of Kobe Bryant and Tony Bennett, who visited the store respectively, have water damage. However, he plans to save them and put the photos back together once he’s rebuilt.
The business became an institution in South Philadelphia. It was my first stop while my family was in town from Saudi Arabia. They went there every time they were in town and took an Uber straight from the airport.
“I don’t think there is a better steak sandwich than Jim’s Steak in South Philly or anywhere else,” said Abdul Dakin.
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“It’s a really good place,” said Reema Almalik. “So it’s obviously very old and a staple of the community. It’s such a big loss.”