Last night in downtown Los Angeles, an ominous orange glow lit up the second largest city in the nation. The eerie addition to the Los Angeles skyline was due to an enormous structure fire consuming an under-construction apartment complex and several adjacent buildings.
Hundreds of firefighters were dispatched to the scene in Los Angeles early Monday morning, and commuters are already being warned of a hellish commute, as a section of the Harbor Freeway was closed in both directions.
— Benjamin Dunn (@benjamindunn925) December 8, 2014
David Ortiz, a public information officer at the Los Angeles Fire Department commented on the size and voracity of the fire.
“This is a historic fire, what we as firefighters would call ‘a career fire.’ It’s huge. I really can’t remember a building fire this big and I have been with the department for 13 years.”
A seven-story apartment building under construction, known as the DaVinci, caught fire under as-yet-to-be-determined circumstances, and looks to be “completely lost.” The fire in the half-finished Los Angeles building was fueled by an exposed wooden frame. Radiant heat from the gigantic fire caused two office buildings across the street to also catch on fire. Those fires were quickly extinguished by fast reacting Los Angeles firefighters, and there were no reports of injuries.
— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) December 8, 2014
In addition to Los Angeles’ Harbor Freeway being closed in both directions near the area of the fire, another major roadway, the Hollywood Freeway, will remain open, but is suffering from the glut of spillover traffic. At 3 a.m. PT, Ortiz warned the public that the fire will impact Los Angeles morning traffic.
“The commute will be very difficult.”
The exact location of the Los Angeles inferno is at 909 W. Temple Street. The 110 Freeway is closed between the 10 and the 101. The 101 itself is closed at Alvarado Street. California Highway Patrol and Los Angeles authorities are advising motorists to avoid the entire area if at all possible.
The DaVinci was part of a new wave of upscale downtown apartment complexes in Los Angeles. The project’s website described the construction, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“Experience urban-style elegance and European living in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. The Da Vinci, the newest member of the Renaissance collection, will offer fifteen unique floor plans to match your lifestyle. Indulge in world-class amenities, such as a state of the art fitness facility, a full size indoor basketball court, a residential lounge, a library, a theater and a business center.”
Those dreams of urban-style elegance went up in smoke this morning when the Los Angeles fire started at 1:20 a.m., with the flames being seen as far away as the Hollywood Hills.
[Image via Twitter]