St. J fire victim
hopes to rebuild
ST. JOHNSBURY — The owner of a historic St. Johnsbury building severely damaged by fire last month wants to rebuild.
Owner Bruno Ravel is still too upset about the fire to talk to reporters. But he has been talking with historic preservationists, real estate developers and the local Chamber of Commerce about how to rebuild — despite having no insurance, Vermont Public Radio reports.
Scott Beck, the chamber’s executive director, owns a bookstore in a neighboring building that was rebuilt after a fire in 2000. He knows how much work it will take just to stabilize the building.
“The third floor is mostly gone, part of the roof is gone and part of the façade,” he said of the fire on Railroad Street. “So they’ve got their work ahead of them, for sure.”
One preservationist estimates the building will cost $1 million to rebuild.
Fires have burned parts of downtown St. Johnsbury in 2000, 2003 and in 2008.
The Dec. 23 fire was accidental, caused by electrical problems, fire officials said.MORE IN Vermont NewsJames Jeffords called it his “first vivid memory.” It was just before Christmas 1939. Full Story
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