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Two injured in East Baltimore building collapse

Two contractors were injured in an East Baltimore row home under renovation that partially collapsed Tuesday morning, officials said.

Both contractors sustained non-life-threatening injuries, but one was listed in serious condition after the chimney collapsed, said Blair Adams, a spokeswoman for the Baltimore City Fire Department. Firefighters were called at 10:30 a.m. to the house under renovation in the 1700 block of E. Biddle St. They were able to quickly enter through the rear of the house to recover the contractors.

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Rear view of four rowhouses in the 1700 block of East Biddle Street near Rutland Avenue where a construction accident occurred.
Rear view of four rowhouses in the 1700 block of East Biddle Street near Rutland Avenue where a construction accident occurred. (Amy Davis)

“It appears that those two individuals could have been contractors that had been working at that address,” Adams said. Neither of their names were released.

The two contractors had been working on the second floor when a chimney collapsed, dropping bricks through the floorboards and causing one of those contractors to fall to the basement.

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Built in 1890, the boarded-up house is in the footprint of the sprawling East Baltimore Development Inc. redevelopment, and it was transferred by the city to a developer, ReBUILD Metro, for rehabilitation, according to Cheryl Washington, EBDI’s president and CEO.

It was among a group of properties transferred to ReBUILD Metro’s East Side Partners LLC in March, according to state taxation records. The city had acquired the property from ARK Property Development for $12,700 in 2010, records show.

ReBUILD Metro could not be reached for comment.

Chunks of brick and other debris lay scattered around the outside of the house Tuesday as building inspectors interviewed members of the construction team who had been working on the renovation.

Rear view of four rowhouses in the 1700 block of East Biddle Street near Rutland Avenue where a construction accident occurred.
Rear view of four rowhouses in the 1700 block of East Biddle Street near Rutland Avenue where a construction accident occurred. (Amy Davis)
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