Detroit pizza lovers now have a new place to enjoy their beloved dish. The Detroit Pizza Bar, a Black-owned pizza restaurant, will be officially open on April 8, offering high-quality service, according to the founders Akunna Olumba and Marcus Jones. The pizzeria will also allow its customers to have an amazing view of the West McNichols streetscape from its rooftop while eating.
Owned by Akunna Olumba and Marcus Jones and located at 7316 W. McNichols (Six Mile), Detroit Pizza Bar received investments of $1.3 million and it gave the abandoned commercial building on McNichols a new and more vibrant look. Also, the owners revealed that the restaurant generated 20 jobs and is expected to create dozens more, adding that 100% of the staff hired are Detroit residents who live near the establishment.
The pizzeria has 4,500 square-foot and it was funded by the Strategic Neighborhood Fund, a $150 million initiative led by the nonprofit Invest Detroit, funded by six corporate funders and philanthropic organizations. The funding institution works for the betterment of neighborhoods in the city and to create opportunity and equity for local minority-owned businesses.
“When developing in corridors like Livernois-Six Mile that have traditionally struggled to get funding for projects, the Strategic Neighborhood Fund has become an indispensable resource, because they allow both the redevelopment and the stabilization of long-forgotten commercial thoroughfares,” Marcus Jones, co-owner of the Detroit Pizza Bar told CBS Detroit. “The SNF has helped my partner Akunna Olumba and I not only open our business but help make a difference on this stretch of McNichols,” he added.
For the co-founder of the Detroit Pizza Barr Akunna Olumba, the funding helped to create the development the way they had intended.
“The Strategic Neighborhood Fund allowed us, as developers, to ensure our commitment to green building and workforce development,” Olumba said. “With the funding, we were able to install solar panels, and to institute a six-to-eight-week training program for all our employees.”
Keona Cowan, executive vice president of lending at Invest Detroit stated that “Detroit Pizza Bar is a wonderful addition to the redevelopment of this key commercial corridor that is largely being led by some of Detroit’s most talented Black developers and business owners.”
The SNF stated that it is working with many local community organizations, such as block clubs and nonprofits, to expand its approach and support minority-owned businesses, the institution said. In the Live6 neighborhood, SNF highlights the role of the Live6 Alliance, which worked hard to improve the quality of life in the neighborhoods and businesses around the Livernois Avenue and McNichols Road corridor.
For more information, visit The Detroit Pizza Bar’s Instagram page.