AKRON, OH (Downtown Akron loses 3 Point; eatery says shutdown related to underground fire last month, by Katie Byard, ohio.com)
Downtown Akron’s 3 Point restaurant, which shut down temporarily after an underground fire in December, has closed permanently after seven years on East Market Street.
Developer Tony Troppe, the building’s owner, said Wednesday the space would not be vacant for long.
He and partners in the BLU Jazz+ club in basement space below the restaurant plan to expand upstairs, creating a BLU dining spot.
“We’re giving [BLU] a front door on Market Street.”
- Tony Troppe
3 Point co-owner Chad Leek said that as time went on, it made sense to shut down — allowing him and co-owner Domenic Fragomeni to focus on other ventures.
“There were too many variables,” Leek said, “We had no way to get online reservations [because Internet service was down for weeks following the fire]. And how long was our staff going to stick around?… Servers have to make money.”
3 Point, in an area known as the arts and cultural district downtown, offered a blend of casual and fine dining and regularly hosted wine tastings.
“It was an awesome run,” Leek said, noting he and Fragomeni “were debt-free in that restaurant. … A lot of owners can’t say that.”
3 Point opened in 2010, when Fragomeni and Leek took over the former Big City Chophouse in the historic 1870s Hermes Building, between Main and High streets.
Troppe, the building’s owner, oversaw redevelopment of the property more than 15 years ago. It is one of several buildings he has redeveloped downtown.
Troppe said Wednesday that plans are just being made for the new eatery and no opening date has been set.
He envisions a restaurant that meshes with BLU, playing “off the music heritage of St. Louis and New Orleans. Kind of Cajun, kind of Creole, French-inspired cuisine. … It’ll be a new culinary experience downtown.”
The eatery’s name will include “BLU,” Troppe said.
The BLU jazz club is across Maiden Lane from Troppe’s Musica, as well as the Crave restaurant, which is housed in another building owned by Troppe and partners.
Fragomeni and Leek revealed the permanent closing of 3 Point with a post this week on the restaurant’s Facebook page.
In the post, they said the shutdown was “due to circumstances related to the underground fire that occurred Dec. 12.”
In a previous post, the owners had apologized for lack of phone service, and explained that the ongoing fire investigation meant that workers could not access phone lines.
Leek said Wednesday that he and Fragomeni are among a group of partners who own two out-of-state sports bars.
Leek owns an area car dealership that specializes in used higher-end vehicles, and Fragomeni owns rental property.
The Dec. 12 fire initially was reported to be an electrical fire in an underground vault on East Market.
Further information was not available Wednesday from the Akron Fire Department.
The fire led to a power outage, caused smoke damage to the Everett Building just west of 3 Point (also owned by Troppe and partners) and rerouted traffic for hours.
No injuries were reported at the time, but the outage forced the closure of 3 Point and the Huntington Bank branch in the Everett Building as well as the evacuation of several apartments.
Troppe said the fire sped up Huntington’s plans to move operations to the First National Tower as part of its acquisition of FirstMerit Corp.
|BLU Jazz+ was named one of the "Best Jazz Venues in the World" by DownBeat Magazine (2016, 2017)*|
|Committed to the preservation of America's treasured art form of jazz, BLU Jazz+ Masterclass Foundation (BJMF) is a new program developed by the founders of BLU Jazz+ Akron that brings “front-row” jazz education performance & mentorship opportunities to student musicians and art lovers alike through an ongoing series of special events throughout the year.|