Fire officials in Iqaluit say a blaze Wednesday night in a downtown duplex is "suspicious" and they've now turned the investigation over to police.

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Fire officials in Iqaluit say a blaze Wednesday night in unit 151-B is suspicious and they've now turned the investigation over to police. (Emily Ridlington/CBC)

Fire crews were called to unit 151-B at about 7:30 p.m. The small fire inside the public housing unit was quickly put out.

Fire chief Luc Grandmaison said nobody was in the building at the time but he said local Red Cross volunteers stepped in to help residents find somewhere else to stay.

"Two people were left homeless from one of the dwellings, and the other one, basically a family of five, were also taken over by the Red Cross, but they'll be able to go back to the dwelling within the next few days."

Grandmaison said police will determine the exact cause of the fire.

He estimates the cost of the damage to be about $50,000.