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$1M in damage after weekend fire at Edmonton restaurant

Click to play video: 'Why Not Café burns down on third anniversary in Edmonton' Why Not Café burns down on third anniversary in Edmonton
An Edmonton chef received a devastating call over the weekend, when his restaurant — Why Not Café — caught fire and was destroyed – Dec 8, 2020

A weekend fire at Edmonton’s Why Not Cafe and Bar caused an estimated $1 million in damage, including to the store below it.

Edmonton Fire Rescue Services was called to the building at 85 Avenue and 109 Street on Sunday just before 7 a.m., after a passerby noticed flames and smoke coming from the roof of the building.

A total of eight fire crews — or 28 firefighters — responded before it was declared fully extinguished at 8:37 a.m.

Read more: Sunday fire heavily damages Edmonton’s Why Not Cafe and Bar on 109 Street

On Wednesday, officials said while the cause of the restaurant fire is still under investigation, investigators said there is an estimated $1 million in damage to the building and its contents.

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“Fire Investigators have confirmed that there was flame, smoke and heat damage to the exterior of the northside of the building as well as water and smoke damage to the business located below,” said a news release from Edmonton Fire Rescue Services on Wednesday.

The business located below is Strath Moto — a motorcycle gear store.

A statement from Strath Moto said it has temporarily closed, including to online orders, due to the “extensive” smoke and water damage to its products.

Fire officials said about $200,000 of the estimated damage was to the contents of Why Not and Strath Moto, while $800,000 of damage was to the building itself.

A shot of the Why Not Cafe and Bar following a fire on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2020.
A shot of the Why Not Cafe and Bar following a fire on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2020. Instagram / whynotyeg

A GoFundMe has been launched to support Why Not Cafe and Bar in hopes of raising money to help with the costs of the loss.

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Chef Levi Biddlecombe, the owner of the restaurant, told Global News Monday he was unsure if it will be possible to rebuild at the same location.

“It’s not known yet if the space is going to be salvageable,” Biddlecombe said.

No one was injured in the fire.

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