Construction fire in basement of H&M site causes significant smoke, no fire damage and building evacuations.
A fire caused by construction equipment in the basement of the upcoming H&M retail store on King Street caused the Fire Department to evacuate surrounding buildings and reroute traffic Wednesday morning. The fire is out, according to Fire Department spokesman Bob Rodriguez, but "smoke conditions are causing us to evacuate that building and surrounding buildings," he said, speaking from the site near 614 King St. There is no fire damage, he said, and streets have been reopened. One lane is blocked on S. Washington Street near King Street. A fire truck also is parked near King and St. Asaph.
Location formerly housed Restoration Hardware, which closed in late January.
Clothing retailer H&M plans to move into the King Street space recently vacated by Restoration Hardware. The company, which has about 2,500 stores spread across 44 markets around the globe, has a growth target to increase its number of stores by 10 percent to 15 percent annually, according to its website. Douglas Development owns the building and it has applied for permits for building changes with the city. H&M plans to alter the interior of the building at a cost of about $975,000, according to permit papers. A target opening date was not disclosed, but the company hopes to have a preliminary review of the building's electrical, mechanical and plumbing networks in about a month. A call to H&M offices in New York as well as to Douglas …