Questions Remain After Fire Rips Through Bedford Park Home

Questions Remain After Fire Rips Through Bedford Park Home
by David Greene

Fire Marshal’s continue to investigate the cause of a blaze that tore through a 3-story building, destroying several apartments and a business in the Bedford Park section.

An FDNY Fire Marshal looks for evidence on the second floor of the Villa Avenue building.–Photo by David Greene

Firefighters responded to calls after fire broke out at 3160 Villa Avenue, at 11:40 a.m., on Wednesday, February 28. At the time officials stated that the fire broke out on the second-floor and quickly spread to the third-floor, prompting a response of more that 100 firefighters who battled the blaze for 30 minutes, before it was brought under control.

No injuries were reported and the FDNY Fire Marshal continues to investigate the blaze that displaced at least four families.

The inside of the second and third floors appeared gutted and the rest of the building suffered extensive water damage, including a business on the ground floor called Bridge / Weston United Community Renewal.

Firefighters begin their investigation after fire tore through a 3-story building on Villa Avenue.–Photo by David Greene

According to it’s website Bridge / Weston works with struggling individuals dealing with homelessness, mental illness and substance abuse. It’s not yet known if clients of Bridge / Weston United Community Renewal lived in the apartments above the storefront location or not.

A woman answering the phone at the Harlem-based non-profit on Monday, March 5, acknowledged the fire, and stated, “Yes, but that’s not our location though. I cannot because I am not authorized to speak about this, I am only the receptionist here,” and directed calls to someone in the “leasing department.” She added, “This building does not belong to us.”

Charred debris litters the sidewalk after a blaze at 3160 Villa Avenue in Bedford Park.–Photo by David Greene

A call to that department went unanswered.

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