MANCHESTER, Conn. (WTNH) -- Crews are back out in Manchester waiting to tear down a building destroyed in a big fire over the weekend. At least two dozen people called the building home, as well as a bakery and pawn shop.
The charred burned out shell of the brick building is likely to be torn down by day's end creating a glaring gap in the string of historic buildings, stores on downtown Main Street.
"It's going to be a big hole, I can't imagine what they are going to do with this," said merchant Bill Bayer.
"You lose that line of architecture down Main Street and that's not going to be there anymore," said Mike Orlowski, Park Hill Joyce Flower Shop.
Investigators are labeling the blaze accidental, saying it started Saturday in the basement of the Great Harvest Bread Company, moving to Connecticut Valley Coin and spreading up, wiping out 24 apartments.
No one was hurt, but all the floors collapsed causing the building to be unstable that it must come down.
"The Valley Coin Company we know had a safe inside, we will recover the safe and whatever is in it," said Chief Robert Bycholski, Manchester FD. "It is a fire resistant safe that is going to be salvageable as far as anything else in the debris, we hope that we will be able to salvage something that is important to the businesses."
Neighboring stores may have smoke and water damage.
Fellow merchants feel for the store owners that lost everything.
"You put a lot of hard work, effort into it now what are they doing today, they are sitting there pondering you know what is my next move," said Orlowski, "but I'm sure this community will come out and help them as they always do."
The last few years have seen a real storefront renovation along Main Street, so with this building coming down there is already question of what could go up in its place?
"If you look along the storefronts a lot has been modernized pretty nicely," Bayer said. "It's going to be tough to be something in that fits."
Crews are on standby for expected fire flare ups as rubble is removed.
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