Many blessings on this day the Lord has made. I pray your rest and worship have refreshed you this weekend.
Saturday night, as some of you may be aware, a three-alarm fire occurred just north of the Selby Avenue bridge immediately west of our Kohler Building (west of the baseball field. The blaze totally destroyed the building to our west. It was used as a storage facility for tires and a host of other items. The Kohler building was spare complete destruction. However, two new vehicles used by our Sodexo partners were destroyed as were some of the other contents. We do not yet have a full estimate of the damage. The Kohler building has been used by CSP for decades as the location of our building department’s shop.
The Fire Marshall has launched an investigation into the cause of the fire and our assessment and clean-up efforts begin in earnest tomorrow. We are grateful for the tremendous work done by St. Paul Fire and Rescue and Police Departments to battle the blaze, secure the area and divert onlookers from the fire. The blaze began about 6:00 pm last night. The crews worked through the night and Sunday morning one of the fire department “towers” was still pouring water onto the burn site. Saturday night there were 5 towers battling the blaze at one point. Overall there were 16 fire crews and a total of 86 emergency service personnel on-site.
The property destroyed is one that we have worked to acquire over the years without success. Perhaps the owner will now be more open to selling the property to us. Because it is adjacent to both the baseball and softball complex and Parking Lot D it would be an ideal location to acquire and would provide several options for expansion to the southwest side of the campus.
As additional information is available, I will communicate it with you. Our Critical Incident and Sodexo teams did a great job supporting the work of the fire department. Our RAs, who are on campus for training, also did an excellent job of helping to secure the area and to bring water to the firefighters.
God is so good and continues to bless CSP abundantly. His Guardian Angels attended many last evening.
God’s peace be with you,