A fire that broke out in the back alley of the Chinese Cultural Centre in the Downtown Eastside has been deemed suspicious and will be investigated by police.
It’s the second suspicious fire in one weekend in neighbourhood.
The two-alarm fire behind the Chinese Cultural Centre broke out Sunday evening, Fire Chief Karen Fry said on Twitter. She shared photos of firefighters battling the flames in the laneway west of Columbia Street.
2nd alarm fire in the 0- 100 blk of East Pender St.#DTES #Chinatown @VanFireRescue @IAFF18 @CityofVancouver pic.twitter.com/tmIxS7SFa0
— Karen Fry (@Karen_Fry) March 27, 2023
“As you may have seen, the fire did not penetrate the building but was started on the outside,” Fry said. “This is a suspicious fire and our partners at the Vancouver Police Department have taken over the investigation.”
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This was the second suspicious fire to break out in the Downtown Eastside over the weekend. A fire at a commissary kitchen on Saturday on Hastings Street also impacted several businesses.
“We are grateful that everyone is okay, however, the building is destroyed as is our kitchen and all of our equipment,” Kevin McKenzie from Top Rope Birria said. “I won’t get into the details of just how much this complicates things for us but I’ll just say that the timing is really, really bad.”
VPD confirmed to Daily Hive that the fire was deemed suspicious and that arson investigators are looking into it.