.

Oak Street Building Demolished After Fire

Evanston Fire Chief Greg Klaiber spoke about the recent fire at the 4th Ward Meeting Mar. 16.

The historic has been demolished. Evanston Fire Chief Greg Klaiber said at a 4th Ward meeting Wednesday that the fire department and department of property standards deemed the demolition necessary.

“Unfortunately we couldn’t save the actual fire structure,” Klaiber said.  “I made a determination with property standards that this was an unsafe building.  We had a chimney freestanding 30 feet that was unsupported.  The walls of the north were leaning towards the Margarita Inn and we didn’t want that to damage the building. We didn’t want anyone to get hurt walking in and out.”

According to Klaiber, the fire department arrived on the scene within four minutes.  However, once the department arrived at the scene, they realized the blaze was beyond their capabilities.

“We issued a first box alarm, second, and then a third box alarm,” Klaiber said.  “What that means is that we have automatic responses from outside communities, such as Wilmette, Skokie, Park Ridge, who come to assist us.” 

Klaiber said that there were no injuries Tuesday night because of the department's swift response and ability to maintain the fire. As a result, he said the buildings surrounding 1560 Oakton Street were “virtually untouched."

“These guys did an amazing job last night.  ,” said Alderman Donald Wilson (4th Ward). “The people in the neighborhood are all fine and intact.  The firemen did a fantastic job of protecting everyone. "

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.  According to Klaiber, investigations will proceed in the coming days.

Richard Schulte March 17, 2011 at 10:47 AM
Klaiber said . . .because of the department's swift response and ability to maintain the fire. As a result, he said the buildings surrounding 1560 Oakton Street were “virtually untouched." “These guys did an amazing job last night. It was dramatic and the flames were huge,” said Alderman Donald Wilson (4th Ward). “The people in the neighborhood are all fine and intact. The firemen did a fantastic job of protecting everyone. " Not to diminish the efforts of the fire department, but let's give credit where credit is due. The blank masonry wall on the south side of the Margarita Inn prevented the fire from spreading to the Inn. The blank wall was required by the building code. So let's give some credit to the building code adopted by the City of Evanston and the building department too. And while we're on the subject, let's not forget the fire prevention bureau. Chief Tom Linkowski, former Evanston Fire Marshal used to say: "Do you hear that? [Silence-no sirens.] That's the sound of fire prevention working." Schulte & Associates Building Code Consultants
John C Thomson March 17, 2011 at 12:36 PM
Word on the street has it that a witness to the fire saw a man being handcuffed and led a way from the building yet no mention of this occuring appeared in any of the stories being reported. H'mmm.
Tim March 17, 2011 at 01:55 PM
Word on the street where? I spent a better part of my day talking to fire & insurance inspectors, let alone I stood out there videoing the fire after I called in to 911. No one on Oak Street said these words. Never saw anyone in cuffs led off,and my footage starts before the fire department got there.

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something