A fire caused an estimated $100,000 damage Tuesday night to west-side market that has become a landmark to area residents.
The fire started in the rear of Clark's Grocery, 376 S. Ninth West, about 5:16 p.m. in the rear of the building and spread through the attic area. Food and other contents of the building were heavily damaged by smoke, according to Salt Lake Fire Battalion Chief Gordon Nicholl."A woman was at the front and smelled smoke and looked around and saw smoke billowing from the back of the building," Nicholl said.
Clark Fjeldsted, the market operator, said that there were about eight people in the store at the time of the fire. All got out unharmed, and no injuries were reported.
"There's a lot of people that come here. They need their personal checks cashed and don't know anyone at the big stores. They like the personal service," Fjeldsted said.
A neighbor, Lou Dell, said she has been shopping at the store since she was a girl. It has gone through several changes. Once it was a Buy-Rite and then an IGA. Fjeldsted said he has operated the store for four years.
At the time of the fire it was uncertain whether the store would reopen. If the fire forces the store to close, some of the neighbors would have to walk several blocks for groceries, a neighbor said.
Four engines, two trucks and 31 firefighters responded to the blaze. The cause of the fire was under investigation. Fjeldsted speculated that old wiring in the building may have ignited the fire.