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Fire Damages The Park Theater Mall, Historic Park Theater Was Spared

All Photos EP News

All Photos EP News

A fire which has seriously damaged the historic Park Theatre Mall is now contained, reported the Estes Park Volunteer Fire Department (EPVFD) at noon today.  Estes Park Police Dispatch received the first report at 6:19 a.m.; EPVFD responded at 6:21 a.m. Upon arrival, firefighters reported seeing fire breaking through the roof on the west side of the mall building.

The fire, located at 116 East Elkhorn Ave in downtown Estes Park, was contained to the mall itself, and did not spread to the adjoining buildings.

The Estes Park Police Department evacuated neighboring businesses on Elkhorn Avenue early that morning, and electric service was suspended to the area for safety concerns.  The power is expected to be restored by 2 p.m. today.

Elkhorn Avenue is currently closed to traffic from the intersections of Highways 34 & 36 to Spruce Avenue to accommodate fire equipment and is expected to reopen later today.

EPN-fire2The building, which dates back to 1914, was originally a carriage house and livery; more recently, the building was converted into stores. No fire alarms or sprinkler systems had been installed in the building, which was home to seven businesses.

Due to the construction of the building, firefighters – which included responders from Loveland Fire Rescue, Pinewood Springs Fire District, Allenspark Fire District, and Glen Haven Fire District – were forced to fight the flames from the outside of the building with ladder trucks, aerials, and snorkel apparatus. Also helping out was local firefighter Doug Klink and his restored snorkel vehicle.

Larimer County Sheriff’s officials assisted the Estes Park Police Department in directing traffic and closing the surrounding streets. Estes Park Police Auxiliary assisted as well. Town of Estes Park Streets, Parks, Water and Light & Power Departments assisted with water quality concerns, coning, and other safety issues.

EPN-fire3“We are very grateful for the prompt response of the Estes Park Volunteer Fire Department, which helped minimize the spread of the fire,” said Mayor Bill Pinkham, “This incident demonstrates the importance of having a properly trained, dedicated, and well-equipped fire department. It was fortunate that the weather cooperated and we did not have high winds,”

“We also appreciate the cooperation and support of our neighboring agencies who pitched in during this critical time,” Pinkham added.

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© 2014 Estes Park News, Inc

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