Deadline set for building demolition

City officials have set a deadline for the demolition of the historic building along Hewitt Avenue that was destroyed by a fire Nov. 8.

The demolition must be completed by March, city spokeswoman Kate Reardon said. Permits have been issued for a protective walkway in the area during the work.

The fire broke out in the evening at the McCrossen Building, just west of Comcast Arena on Hewitt Avenue. It housed apartments, a restaurant and shops.

Michael D. Beard, 61, died from smoke inhalation. Investigators believe the fire started in his room. His death was ruled an accident.

The extent of the damage to the building meant there was too little information available to pinpoint a cause. There were no indications the fire was suspicious.

It’s too early to tell how traffic will be affected during work at the site, Reardon said.

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