Maxwell's, downtown furniture store go up in flames

  • Article by: Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 20, 2008 - 10:57 PM

The fire broke out in a storage area on the third floor of the building where there are a few apartments. All the residents escaped unhurt, but one lost a cat in the fire.

A favorite lunchtime spot and night watering hole for downtown Minneapolis work- ers was heavily damaged in a large fire Wednesday. Also damaged was a furniture shop next door.

Crews responded to a blaze on the roof of a building at 1203 Washington Av. S. around 10:30 a.m., said Sean McKenna, a fire department spokesman. "It was a heavy fire when crews arrived," McKenna said.

No one was hurt, but parts of the building housing the Scandia Furniture Co. and Maxwell's American Cafe collapsed, he said.

The fire broke out in a storage area on the third floor of the building where there are a few apartments. All the residents escaped unhurt, but one lost a cat in the fire, he said.

Washington Avenue was closed while crews battled the fire, but the street reopened around 1:40 p.m.

Kimberly Huston, of the public relations firm Padilla, Speer and Beardsley located nearby, watched as the fire consumed one of her favorite lunch spots.

"That is one of those neighborhood joints you can count on for lunch," she said. "They have great food there. I hope it comes back."

There is no word on what sparked the fire, but it appears to be accidental, McKenna said.

TIM HARLOW

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