Fire destroys three-storey building under construction in Iqaluit
Building was going to house new dental clinic, apartments
Fire consumed a three-storey building in Iqaluit on Saturday, destroying what was expected to be the eventual home of the city's new dental clinic as well as apartments.
Firefighters were called to the scene at around 6:30 a.m., said Iqaluit communications manager Kent Driscoll.
They put it out sometime between 4 and 5 p.m. that day, with firefighters continuing to monitor it for hot spots.
Roadblocks put up to keep people away will stay in place until Tuesday or Wednesday on Fred Coman Street, the city said in a Tuesday update. There's no timeline for when a roadblock on Natsiq Street will be removed, due to how much material from the fire is still on the road.
"A lot of water did come down during the firefighting, and that has created some conditions around that area that are difficult for both vehicles and pedestrians," Driscoll said.
"We're asking all residents, please don't drive past [the roadblocks], don't walk past them. They're there for your protection."
Driscoll said he hasn't received reports that any other building was damaged in the area. Since the building was under construction, no one was inside when the fire broke out, he added.
"We're very lucky that the fire department got on it as quick as they did," Driscoll said. "I live around 250 metres from the site and not only could we see the smoke, we could hear the fire. You could hear the crackling. That was a massive fire."
As of Monday, internet and landline phone services were down for some residents near the site because the fire damaged a phone line.
Catherine Newsome, the senior manager of communications for Northwestel, said Northwestel's technicians have visited the site.
"We can now begin assessing the damage and start working toward repairing our infrastructure," she said, adding she doesn't have a timeline yet for when services will be up and running again.
"Right now, we're just starting that."
The issue doesn't impact cell service, she added.
The Iqaluit Fire Department, RCMP and the fire marshal's office are working to determine the cause of the fire, the city said Tuesday.
With files from Emma Tranter