Ink has been dried and demolition work has begun to bring one of the Akron area’s favorite pizza parlors to Dayton.
Tony Clark, a Huffman Historic Area resident and the owner of DK Effect , said he has formally signed an agreement with Gionino’s Pizzeria, a northeast Ohio based pizza chain with about 44 locations between Cleveland and Canton.
He started demo work last month to transform the former site of Brother’s tire shop, 1528 E. Third St., into a Gionino’s franchise.
Clark is from Tallmadge, a community in the Akron area. He grew up a stone’s throw from Gionino’s first location.
He said he looks forward to bringing the flavors from his hometown to the city he loves and calls home.
“It is generally always rated the top (pizza) in the city,” Clark said of Gionino’s. “It is not just a pizza place. They have really good fried chicken and chicken wings and salads.”
The restaurant also features several Italian dishes on its menu.
If all goes as planned, Clark’s will be the first Gionino’s in the area.
The closest Gionino’s location to Dayton is in Mansfield. There are no locations in southwest Ohio.
The Dayton restaurant will employ about 25 people and have seating for 25, Clark said.
Clark, who is partnered in the restaurant with his uncle Jim Clark, hopes to open by the end of the year.
He said the location will eventually offer a delivery service to a four-mile radius.
Gionino’s food will be sold within DK Effect, the 64-seat bar arcade next door that Clark owns with Joshua Brown.
It will mainly be a kitchen for DK Effect,” Clark said. “People will be able to order at the bar and the food will be delivered right there at their tables.”
Like DK Effect, Clark said Gionino’s is part of a push to revitalize the Huffman neighborhood.
He said he likes the challenge of helping improve his neighborhood.
“Anything that is going to help the neighborhood is going to help me directly,” he said. “When you do these things, you get to meet interesting people with a similar mindset.”