Motel Wayne will soon reopen after devastating fire

Motel Wayne in New Haven spent nearly two years remodeling 12 rooms after it caught fire in November 2012.

NEW HAVEN, Ind. (WANE) – A fire in November 2012 destroyed 12 rooms at Motel Wayne in New Haven off of State Road 930. After a year and a half, the owners are ready to open up again for business.

One of the owners, Harish Shah, said the fire was devastating due to the connection he had with the motel. He said he starting working at Motel Wayne in 1983 and he and his wife bought it and become owners in 2000.

The fire displaced about 55 people. Shah said most of them were living at the motel. There was widespread damage to 12 rooms because of the lack of fire stops inside the attics of each room. None of the rooms had a sprinkler system in the rooms at the time. It ended up being a long process after the fire for the Shahs.

“After the fire, it was very hard to find a contractor,” said Shah. “So, we tried and tried and tried and finally we got a contractor.”

The owners will have to deal with more setbacks due the last two winters. A year and a half later, significant progress has been made to renovate every room that was damaged. Each room now comes with new beds, a mounted television, new desk, laps, remodeled bathrooms and more. The rooms have also been updated with a sprinkler system. Drivers along State Road 930 have seen the remodels and some have inquired about rooms.

“Every day, at least four, five people, they’ll stop by and ask when are you going to open,” Shah said.

Contractors were still out Tuesday evening putting on the finishing touches, but the owners said they look forward to welcoming back their customers who they consider family.

The motel will reopen on Thursday at 9 am.

The total cost to remodel all 12 rooms cost over $600,000.

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