Crews battle massive blaze at Seton Cineplex movie theatre
A movie theatre under construction in southeast Calgary was just months from opening when a large fire ripped through the building on Sunday night.
The Cineplex theatre was announced back in 2012 and was supposed to open back in 2014, but a number of delays plagued the project, pushing the opening date to the end of this year.
However, officials say that a fire that broke out at about 7:00 p.m. on Sunday will change that deadline once more.
Cineplex had recently been hiring employees for the location, a 43,000 square foot building with 11 screens, that had an anticipated opening date of Christmas.
There is no word on how much damage was caused in the fire.
No one was injured in the fire and no one is believed to have been inside when it took place.
Sarah Van Lange, communications director with Cineplex, says the company is assessing the damage to the building but there is no timeline on when the theatre would be ready to open.
"We are working closely with the local authorities to determine the cause of the fire, but as this is an open investigation, we have no further information to share at this time. We would like to express our heartfelt appreciation to the local fire department and the Calgary Police for their support on the scene and are so grateful that no one was injured."
Fire officials say they haven't been able to go into the building yet to determine the cause of the fire because of structural issues.
"The wall is leaning and it's not currently safe to go in," said public information officer Carol Henke. "Once it's safe to go in, then our investigators can determine the exact origin and cause of the fire."
Henke says the fire was contained to one theatre room but there is smoke damage throughout the whole building.
It is still early in the investigation, but Henke says that there is no evidence to believe the fire was deliberate.
The Cineplex theatre was to be a one-of-a-kind facility, featuring a VIP cinema with reclining seats, in-seat food and alcohol service and it was also set to air NFL games.