THE buildings at 136-13 and 136-15 Roosevelt Avenue stood in the heart of the business district in Flushing, Queens, near the stops for the No. 7 train, the Long Island Rail Road and more than 20 bus lines. That is why, when a fire started in one of the buildings a little after 2 a.m. on Oct. 29, there were still people on the street who saw it burning.
For Merchants, Fire Makes Bad Days Bleaker
Nobody was injured in the fire, the cause of which is still under investigation, said Jim Long, a Fire Department spokesman. But the buildings were damaged so extensively that they had to be torn down the next day. Crews were on the site until the end of last month, clearing debris and cleaning up.
The ground floors of the buildings held a Payless ShoeSource and a Taco Bell/Pizza Hut. For their owners and those of smaller businesses on the upper floors, the task now is to relocate and start over in the midst of the holiday season and at a time when the economy is weakening.