KVUE — A beloved bakery near the University of Texas at Austin campus is a total loss after a fire ripped through the business Monday night, January 24 and into Tuesday morning.
The fire was reported just before 11 pm Monday at the Texas French Bread bakery on Rio Grande Street, just down the road from the West Campus neighborhood and North Lamar Boulevard. When firefighters arrived, they say flames were coming from the roof of the bakery.
Firefighters fought the fire from the inside for about an hour, but the building then became unsafe and they had to work to extinguish the fire from outside. The roof ended up collapsing.
No one was injured in the fire, but the building is an iconic one in Central Austin. Fire crews say it is a total loss.
As of Tuesday, January 25 at 6 am, the fire was almost out but crews were still monitoring hot spots and smoldering because there were so many layers due to the roof collapse.
Local residents are struggling to comprehend the damage. Many people have already been sharing on social media what the building and the bakery meant to them. Some people were even showing up Tuesday morning to see the damage for themselves.
Texas French Bread is celebrating 40 years of business this year. Before the building was a bakery, it was the famous Rome Inn, a music venue in the 1970s where artists like Stevie Ray Vaughan and Lou Ann Barton played.
The cause of the fire is not known at this time, but fire crews believe much of it seemed to be in the roof and ceiling area. Crews said because of the extensive damage, it may be difficult to find the fire’s exact origin. Arson investigators have been brought in to look at all potential causes.
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