Thursday, August 14, 2008

In the Shadows

The big news over the past two days in Philly has been the devastating blaze of an apartment complex in Conshohocken late yesterday afternoon, which left 375 people without homes and destroyed several buildings, including one that was under construction. The complex, called Riverwalk at Millennium, is near my office and the smoke from the fire forced us to leave the building shortly after 5 yesterday. In fact, the fire was so intense and spread so quickly that we worried whether it would reach our offices.

As the Daily News reported, Dramatic Conshohocken fire routs hundreds:

Fortunately, Muldoon and all the other tenants of the luxury complex escaped unharmed yesterday when what developed into an eight-alarm fire started in a building being constructed next door and spread rapidly. The building under construction was destroyed and four or five neighboring buildings were damaged, displacing all 375 residents, said Montgomery County's public-safety director.

More than 300 firefighters from all over Montgomery County battled the flames, which roared spectacularly into the evening sky, drawing the curious from a wide area. By 10:30 p.m., the fire that began 5 1/2 hours earlier was under control, Conshohocken fire officials said.

Late into the night, firefighters poured thousands of gallons of water on pockets of the complex that were still burning.

The complex was consider a major part of the revitalization of Conshy. As noted in the Inky, Real estate empire that revitalized the borough:
The Riverwalk project was at the center of the revitalization of Conshohocken, once a factory town on a dirty river that now gleams with rows of high-rise office buildings.

'It was an eyesore before this,' said Vivian Angelucci, a member and past chairman of the Conshohocken Zoning Board, who lives two blocks from the Riverwalk development.

She credited it with bringing more residents and businesspeople into the borough.

Riverwalk at Millennium is an upscale, 60-acre apartment community built between 2000 and 2005 by O'Neill Properties Group L.P., of King of Prussia. The $51.8 million project was built on a former industrial site along the Schuylkill, according to a Web site for the complex.
Our offices have been in Conshy for about 10 years, so we've witnessed first hand the changes and renovations that have swept through the borough.

In fact, we watched the apartment complex being constructed from the view from our windows. And now, sadly, we are watching it come down, as the buildings that were destroyed are being dismantled.

(Updated 8/17 with new picture)

1 comment:

QuakerDave said...

Man, that was awful. I feel so sorry for all those folks.

I heard today a welder's torch started it. I smell serious lawsuits...