Roof collapse downtown leads to evacuation of nearby businesses

Partial roof collapse downtown

EL PASO, Texas - El Paso firefighters responded to a partial roof collapse downtown at 216 Oregon St., near the corner of Oregon and Overland Monday morning.  

El Paso City development Spokesman Javier Camacho told ABC-7 the building is owned by Minco Properties, but was currently unoccupied. It is in between a florist and a floral supply business.  Three tenants total were evacuated, the utilities shut off, the sidewalk and alley are now closed. The city is deeming the area "unsafe."

Camacho said the removal of load-bearing walls by the previous owners is what caused the collapse. He said currently the walls are not being supported. A tenant on the southside told the city some of the roof fell on their business, although there was no interior damage. 

No one was injured.  

Camacho said the city received a plan to make the building a retail store last week, but after the collapse, more requirements will be needed before any plans move forward. He said city inspectors will be checking up on the building, putting up an exoskeleton to help support it.

Tenants will not be allowed back into the building until the city completes an engineering report, which could take up to three days. 

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