Fire Guts Old Le Virage Restaurant Building

Early Saturday morning blaze causes extensive damage to vacant building on North Main Street, Walnut Creek.

An early morning fire gutted the building that used to house the Le Virage restaurant on North Main Street.

The blaze began about 4:30 a.m. Saturday. Flames were pouring out of the front windows and doors when Contra Costa County Fire Protection District firefighters arrived.

Battalion Chief Dominic Ciotola said it took 90 minutes to get the fire under control because the facility is an old brick building with numerous additions.

No one was found inside the building and no firefighters were injured.

The cause is being investigated. Ciotola said there was no power to the building, so electrical malfunction has been eliminated as a cause.

The multiple alarm fire brought three engines and two ladder trucks to the scene.

Le Virage closed in 2005 and the building has been vacant since then.

Firefighters were still mopping up hot spots after 9 a.m.

Police had closed off the southbound lanes of North Main Street near Parkside Drive.

Thanks to Patch reader Tom Lewenz for sending in a photo of the fire scene.

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julie rose August 25, 2012 at 06:22 PM
I would put money down that it was arson. What better way to get insurance money before selling the land?
Rick F August 26, 2012 at 01:01 AM
Arson? Exactly. No power to the building.
CNET Activist August 26, 2012 at 08:36 AM
Part of the master plan - burn down Piedmont Lumber while planning to build a Lowes. Check next for my analysis on local fires http://petebennett.net/myresearch/default.aspx?id=fire
Mssamjan August 26, 2012 at 04:27 PM
Totally suspicious! Now there are two burned out restaurants that were vacant. The one on Oak Grove is more of an eyesore than before.
Rick F August 26, 2012 at 09:40 PM
It is merely a happy coinicidence that the Walnut Creek City Council's 'Transportation Village' at WC BART was recently approved. Don't read anything in these events, folks.


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