published on May 9, 2016 - 12:40 AM
Written by The Business Journal Staff

A long time Fresno institution, Popolo’s Pizza Place, will be popping up in a new location later this summer.

The Italian eatery, which has been located at 6775 N. Blackstone for 31 years, is moving to the Park Place Shopping Center, located at the corner of Palm and Nees.

The Blackstone location has been closed since early March and the new Popolo’s Pizza, to be located at 7835 N. Palm near Wahoo’s Fish Taco, is scheduled to open in June, although an exact opening date has yet to be announced.

Founded by Gregory Greene, who died earlier this year, Popolo’s is still owned and operated by members of the Greene family, who’ve decided to move to the Park Place Shopping Center after dealing with numerous “structural” issues at the current Blackstone location.

“Although saddened to be leaving our Blackstone and Herndon location, we feel that the matters we’ve faced the last few months have forced us as a family to make this decision,” said a spokesperson for the Greene family.

The new Park Place Popolo’s Pizza, location will feature a large banquet room, patio, arcade and beer and wine bar.

“By relocating to Park Place, we will not only be able to keep our existing delivery area, but expand it,” said the Greene family spokesperson. “Our priority has been to find a great new location where our wonderful customers can easily find us within a short drive up the street.”

In business for more than three decades, Popolo’s has established a wide and loyal customer base around the Valley, as evidenced by its Facebook page, which carries recent posts lamenting the restaurant’s temporary closure.

“I’m lost every other Friday night without my Popolo’s fix,” writes Gary Petrosian.

“I can’t wait for you to open again,” says Jessica Stephenson.

Popolo’s expects to announce the exact opening date of the new location in the next couple of weeks.

Alex Mellor, marketing director for Tutelian development company, which owns and manages Park Place, said, “We are truly delighted to welcome Popolo’s to the Park Place family. With over 30 years of history, everyone in Fresno knows the name, and more importantly, their amazing pizzas. They are a wonderful addition to Park Place and we all eagerly await the chance to once more get the best pizza in Fresno.”

Mellor reports that popular Bay Area restaurant Koja Kitchen has also signed a lease to open a new restaurant at Park Place.

Koja Kitchen, which started as a Bay Area food truck, currently operates a very successful restaurant in Berkeley and will be opening its Fresno restaurant opposite Eureka Burger.

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