KITCHENER -- A million-dollar fire spread through the Inn of Waterloo on Tuesday night, which had been in use as short-term shelter since the fall.

One person was treated at the scene for smoke inhalation. A combined 130 guests and staff were forced out of the building on Tuesday but no other injuries were reported.

Regional police said that those residing at the hotel were taken by bus to a hotel in Guelph.

"There's smoke damage throughout the building so we've checked all four floors," said platoon Chief Ken Lumgair with Waterloo Fire Rescue.

"We did go through and do a secondary search of all the rooms there."

The fire started in one of the second-floor units around 7:30 p.m.

Firefighters said they believe the fire started in the tower being used as a short-term shelter for those experiencing homelessness. They're still looking into what caused the fire.

Some of those who had been staying at the hotel were using it as shelter through the House of Friendship.

"(They) are once again experiencing trauma because of this," said John Neufeld, executive director of the House of Friendship.

The space opened as a shelter in October.

There were around 130 people using the shelter services.

The community is coming together to help people impacted by the fire. There is a call for donations on social media.

Items can be dropped off at the parking lot door of the Emmanuel United Church.

Nine people were self-isolating due to COVID-19. They were initially taken to St. Mary's Hospital and were transferred to another location to continue isolating.

"The other individuals were all taken to two Guelph hotels," Neufeld said. "Everyone was safe, no one was hurt."

Neufeld said it's been tough for guests and staff.

"We are devastated," he said. "There was health-care services here, addiction, mental health, housing help, anything to get people to better health so they can move on to housing."

Hotel management said the rest of the guest rooms in the main building were mostly unaffected and can receive guests.