JFX reopens after Baltimore firefighters battle four-alarm blaze near Woodberry light rail

Firefighters battled a four-alarm fire near the Woodberry light rail Thursday night.

Travel in the North Baltimore area has resumed while Baltimore fire investigators begin to look into what caused a four-alarm fire in a vacant warehouse near the Woodberry light rail station late Thursday night.

Southbound Interstate 83 reopened Friday morning after it was shut down at Northern Parkway as dense smoke blew across the highway, according to the Baltimore Office of Emergency Management. The 41st Street bridge also reopened for the morning commute.

The fire also closed the light rail, but service resumed at 5:30 and I-83 southbound reopened shortly thereafter.

More than 120 firefighters in 39 firetrucks and other vehicles responded about 9 p.m., said Blair Adams, a Fire Department spokeswoman. Heavy smoke and flames were coming from all three floors of a vacant industrial warehouse

Crews broke open the building's boarded-up windows and used a ladder truck to aim a fire hose above the fire. Firefighters battled the fire from the exterior of the vacant building because it might have been unstable inside, according to Adams.

She said Friday morning that the roof collapsed through the second floor.

The building, with a smokestack visible from I-83, was the former Schenuit Tire factory and was slated for redevelopment. It is in the 1700 block of Union Ave.

Conor Creaney of Remington Properties, a co-owner of the building, said he bought it about a year ago, but put it on the market last month after the owners decided not to do the redevelopment themselves.

"We don't have much information on what happened," he said late Thursday. "We spoke to fire investigators. The best they could tell us was to get in touch in the morning."

No one was injured, and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

Adams said the fire was placed under control just after 4 a.m., and that units remained on the scene overnight.

Union Craft brewing, Woodberry Kitchen and other buildings nearby were not affected by the fire.


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