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Dozens displaced after apartment fire in Downtown Guelph

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Dozens of people have been displaced after a fire at a mixed-use building in Downtown Guelph.

Crews were called to the fire on Wyndham Street near Quebec Street just after 1 a.m. Police said between 25 to 30 people have been displaced.

Viewer video shows smoke pouring out of the building and firefighters breaking a window on the main floor to get inside.

The fire chief called it “a stubborn fire that took a fair bit of work” to get under control.

“Our thoughts go out to anybody who is impacted by this. We know that it’s a difficult time anytime a fire happens like this that requires you to evacuate from your home,” Guelph Fire Chief Dave Elloway said. “Right now those people can’t access anything, so everything that they are doing is going to be cared for by social services… making sure that they are feed and they are housed.”

The ground floor of the three-storey building appears to be home to a marketing company, an addictions treatment centre, and previously a furniture store. The upper floors were residential units.

The ground floor of the building appears to be home to a marketing company, an addictions treatment centre and previously a furniture store. (CTV Kitchener)

In a message posted on its website, the additions treatment centre said the overnight fire damaged its clinic and temporarily disrupted service.

Patients are being directed to call 1-877-937-2282 with any questions or concerns.

“We are committed to providing you with ongoing care and there will be no interruption to your medication,” it said.

People displaced by the fire are being sheltered at the West End Community Centre.

Wyndham Street from Quebec Street to Woolwich Street was closed, but had reopened as of 1:45 p.m. Fire officials, including the Office of the Ontario Fire Marshal, and police are investigating.

The cause of the fire has not been determined, but it is believed the fire could have started in the basement.

“We know we have a fire that has compromised the first floor of the structure, caused it to partially collapse into the basement, so really, for us to facilitate any kind of fire investigation, we've got to take care of the structural concerns, so we're going to get a structural engineer in here to assess that,” said Mike Ross and investigator with the Ontario Fire Marshal’s office.

NEARBY RESIDENTS REACT

Danni Rudy Leigh said they were watching the action from across the street.

“I am used to lights and stuff coming down through here, but then suddenly there was so many, and it was like, fire truck, fire truck, fire truck,” Leigh said.

Leigh said their pharmacy is in the building that caught fire.

“All of my meds for the week are in there, and so, now they're trying to call between different places to get meds switched between different pharmacies and things,” said Leigh.

Just down the street, the Pharmasave is trying to step up to fill as many prescriptions as they can.

“Staff there have been really proactive with sending our staff prescriptions for maintaining care,” said the pharmacy owner, Gorge Boctor.

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