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Cartucci’s reopening delayed to bring sprinklers, hoods up to code

SALISBURY — Cartucci’s owner Ted Aurora has run into more snags as he works to reopen his Italian restaurant after a July fire.
Aurora said he had hoped to open in November but learned that the fire suppression system and hood exhausts destroyed in the fire had been grandfathered and must be rebuilt to meet code, not just replaced.
“What goes back in has to be up to code,” he said.
Aurora said he expects drawings soon from the architect and engineer, which he will submit to local government officials for approval. All other construction in the restaurant is complete, he said.
David Phillips, the city’s zoning administrator, said Salisbury has rezoned Cartucci’s on East Fisher Street and everything else will go through the city fire marshal’s office and Rowan County building inspections department.
The county already has approved construction plans and issued a mechanical permit, as well as others, said Pete Bogle, director for Rowan County Building Codes Enforcement Department.
Cartucci’s passed the framing inspection but several other inspections must occur before the restaurant can reopen, Bogle said.
“It totally depends on him and his contractor,” Bogle said. “… I’m really looking forward to having his lunch special again.”
Aurora said he hopes to open in early 2014 but can’t name a date until more details are ironed out.
“Please tell all of our customers that we miss them and wish them a happy holiday, and we are sorry we could not be part of it this year,” Aurora said.
A fire broke out July 9 in an air conditioning unit behind the restaurant. Aurora said he had to deal with two insurance companies and construction delays.
Smoke and water damage in the dining rooms was less severe than the damage in the kitchen, Aurora said. The restaurant will have new ceramic tile floors, new booths and new equipment including a pizza oven with nearly double the capacity of the old oven.
Insurance covered not only most of the cost of repairs and equipment but also allowed Aurora to continue paying staff while the restaurant has been closed, he said.
Simultaneously, Aurora is working to open a second location in the former Blue Vine at 209 S. Main St. He plans to rename the venue The Grapevine and plans to open Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and offer beer, wine, appetizers and desserts, as well as live music.
If he can obtain all permits, Aurora said he hopes to open on New Year’s Eve.

Contact Emily Ford at eford@salisburypost.com.

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