CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, OH (WOIO) - The fire that gutted the Katz Club Diner on Tuesday morning has been ruled as arson by the State Fire Marshal's Office.
Cleveland Heights firefighters were called to the scene around 4:30 a.m. They were on the scene within minutes, but it was too late. The fast moving fire gutted the entire diner.
Lee Road, between Berkshire and Superior, was shut down while the fire was put out.
It took firefighters more than an hour to bring the fire under control.
Douglas Katz is the restaurateur behind The Katz Club.
The Katz Club Diner first made its home in the historic 1949 O'Mahony Diner car (serial number 2154) that originally operated as the Zephyr Diner in Berwyck, Pennsylvania.
It was transported from its original location to Cleveland Heights in 1997, where it was painstakingly restored and joined with the Centennial Diner, now home to the Speakeasy. Originally located in Atlantic City, N.J., the Centennial car is an excellent example of the Mountain View Diner Co. style; the pre-World War II diner models usually incorporated late Art Deco styling and, according to the company motto, were "built to last a lifetime."
At this time, it is not clear what started the fire. The State Fire Marshal's office is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspect(s). Tips can be called in to 1-800-589-2728 if you have any information.