The great Knoxville fire of 2007By now most folks are aware that the McClung Warehouses on Jackson Avenue in downtown Knoxville caught fire early this morning, igniting fires in neighboring buildings including the Philco Warehouse. Much of the Old City had to be evacuated. Mark Saroff owns the McClung Warehouses and I also seem to remember him once telling me that he lived in the building as well. When WIVK reported that one person who lived in the building got out, I presumed it to be Saroff. I hope that Mark is alright, as the press is reporting. WBIR reports that four firefighters have been seriously injured and are in hospital. Our thoughts, prayers, and heart goes out to these brave firefighters.
Here is a video I found of the Philco fire this morning.
Anyone who follows Knoxville and Knox County politics knows that the McClung Buildings have been a subject of controversy for a very long time. The city threatened to use eminent domain to sieze them and/or condemn them, while Mark Saroff, the property owner and developer, has been trying for ages to secure funding to renovate McClung. Mark was a supporter in my suspended campaign for Knox County Commission .
(Hat Tip: News-Sentinel)