The State Fire Marshal will be in the Cedar Rapids suburb of Marion today to try and determine the cause of a downtown business fire over the weekend. The Saturday fire destroyed the Park Place Antique Mall, which had been a hotel built in the 1920s. The cause of the blaze hasn’t yet been determined, but investigators say it does -not- appear to be suspicious in origin. Apartments above the antique mall were safely evacuated. It’s believed the fire started in the basement. No one was hurt. Owner Barbara Olmstead says some collectables in the building could be salvaged, while others were ruined.Olmstead thinks she and her co-owner husband can restore the place, since they did it once before when they opened the business in 1995. She says they got it ready to go in three months from a condemned state, and she doesn’t think it will take that long to get it back.The 30 dealers who sold their stuff on consignment at the antique mall were all insured separately.
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