Rockford city leaders hoping to open area around Corner Bar site soon

Reconstruction on the Corner Bar will start on Friday, Sept. 8.

ROCKFORD, MICH (WZZM) - The owners of the Corner Bar in Rockford say work is beginning tomorrow to shore up exterior walls that are salvageable including the front facade of the building.

In a post on the restaurant's Facebook page, the owners indicated after insurance delays, they can start work to "brace the exterior walls" that can be saved. 

The post indicated "once the bracing is complete, traffic flow will likely resume to a somewhat normal pattern". 

The area around the Corner Bar including N. Main Street has been closed since the fire happened on August 14.

Rockford city leaders indicated today they want to get the Corner Bar stabilized before they open up N. Main and nearby Courtland to traffic. 

The owners wrote on Facebook: "We want to thank our neighbors for their patience. We understand that this has been a difficult time for everyone."

Annalise Petzak works at the Pump House Frozen Yogurt shop directly across the street from the Corner Bar. She says business hasn't been too bad considering the view directly out the front window. 

"We've drawn more attention because people have taken pictures of the area," Petzak said. "I don't know if (the fire) has necessarily been slowing our business down."

The hope is the Corner Bar would re-open next summer. 

"Unfortunately, we have been at the mercy of our insurance company and have had little to no control of the situation," the Corner Bar's Facebook page indicated. "We are very excited, though, to finally be moving forward!"

The community has certainly rallied around the restaurant.  About a dozen stores and restaurants in the Rockford area donated a portion of their sales last month to support the staff at the Corner Bar to help them make ends meet until it's is back up and running.  
  
Fire investigators believe a dumpster fire near the restaurant triggered a gas line explosion to cause the fire.

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