Scene of back-lane arson in Tuxedo. ((CBC))

A Winnipeg man faces 19 arson-related charges after a string of fires at upscale residential properties and damage to buildings at Assiniboine Park Zoo.

Brandon Cory Sutyla, 18, has been charged after someone set fires in the River Heights and Tuxedo neighborhoods earlier this spring and throughout the summer.

It is alleged that garages, fences, garbage containers and sheds were set on fire starting in April and that the torchings continued regularly until a suspect was caught on Tuesday.

Police estimate property damage relating to the arson spree at $280,000.

Buildings around the miniature steam train in Assiniboine Park were set alight at least four times, damaging the train's ticket booth, maintenance buildings and water tower.

Members of the Winnipeg Police Service's arson strike force made an arrest in a back lane in Tuxedo on Tuesday evening near a garbage can and fence that had been set on fire.


Garbage container at an arson scene in Tuxedo. ((CBC))

Winnipeg police Const. Jackie Chaput said the investigation took months and involved "lots of leg work, lots of old fashioned knocking on doors, asking questions, interviewing people."

The spate of fires had Tuxedo residents on edge. Drew Abbott lives in the upscale neighbourhood and said neighbours had come to almost anticipate a fire on weekends.

"You can almost … you know 10 o'clock, 11 o'clock the sirens go off … frequently."

Abbott said there was talk in the neighbourhood of starting a special watch program.

Sutyla remains in custody.