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Pizza chain to open soon in former Fargo King Leo's restaurant

Blaze Pizza will soon take over the former King Leo's, 1443 42nd St. S., Fargo, which closed in December 2016. Forum file photo1 / 2
Blaze Pizza Restaurant / Flickr2 / 2

FARGO—A national pizza chain will soon take over a former burger joint near West Acres Shopping Center.

A Blaze Pizza franchisee group has signed a lease of burger place King Leo's, 1443 42nd St. S., which opened in November 2015 and closed the night of Dec. 31, 2016.

"We got tired of fighting the burger wars," Tom Poole, a co-owner of the building, said about the closure of King Leo's.

He confirmed to The Forum that a franchisee group will lease the new restaurant building and open North Dakota's first Blaze Pizza. The chain based in Pasadena, Calif., was founded in 2011 and now has 173 restaurants in 32 states and Canada, according to a company news release from January.

Generic Blaze Pizza restaurant building. This is a stock image.

Blaze Pizza, which is known for its ability to quickly make pizzas in a couple of minutes using its modern and hot ovens, first came to Minnesota in 2015 when it opened a store in St. Louis Park. The chain also has a restaurant in Minneapolis and Rapid City, S.D., with a second eatery opening soon in Rapid City.

Poole said the new franchisee group leasing the King Leo's building is "very anxious" to open up in Fargo-Moorhead, and he said they've indicated they could open more than one Blaze Pizza in the community.

While the building is practically new, built just before King Leo's opened, he said the new tenants will start working on a quick conversion in early April to add pizza ovens and remodel the space. If all goes according to schedule, Blaze Pizza is expected to start serving customers in the late spring or very early summer, Poole said.

"It's probably one of the very best sites in Fargo-Moorhead," he said. "It's just west of West Acres, and there's a traffic light that goes to West Acres."

Ryan Johnson

Ryan Johnson is the Features Editor for The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. He previously wrote for The Forum and the Grand Forks Herald.

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