Firefighters battle two-alarm blaze at Near West Side parking garage

A two-alarm fire broke out Tuesday afternoon in a truss-roof parking garage in University Village on the Near West Side.

"It was literally blazing out of the parking lot," said resident Malvika Shree. "So we could see the fire from my house from the front door!"

Crews responded to the fire around 3 p.m. at a single-story parking garage of a condo building in the 700 block of South Ashland Avenue, according to Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford.

The call was initially for a single car on fire, but the fire quickly spread and firefighters made an aggressive attack.

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  (Larry Langford / Chicago Fire Department)

"Fire got in the roof of the auto parking garage, so we had to pull our guys out and elevate the alarm," said Chicago Assistant Deputy Fire Commissioner Donald Walker.

The two-alarm fire brought out about 100 firefighters near Ashland and Flournoy, where several streets were shut down all afternoon.


"It’s taking a long time because once the roof fell, collapsed, we had to put the fire out and get up under the fire and put out the fire," said Walker.

In all, more than a dozen cars were destroyed. Resident Beverly Green calls the area a walking community, where many work in nearby hospitals.

"So their vehicles are here, there are quite a few vehicles in the garage," said Green. "It could’ve been a lot worse, none of the units are impacted so far."

There were no injuries reported and the cause of the fire is still under investigation.