Fire Burns Downtown Bryan Building

By: Daniel Armbruster Email
By: Daniel Armbruster Email


From a glance at the front exterior it may be hard to tell that flames were shooting from the roofs of historic buildings in downtown Bryan Thursday night. Business owners are still trying to come to grips after a fire gutted historic buildings.

"It's one of those calls you don't want to get," Sammy Catalena, Catalena Hatters.

"I'm still kind of waiting for the shock to set in and the reality of it," Robert Olsen, owner of Brazos Valley Bail Bonds.

209 N. Main Street is where the fire started. That building received extensive damage.

"Right now we're looking at a potential malfunction of the stove that is located in the back of the building," said Randy McGregor, Bryan Fire Chief.

The man leasing the building where the fire started declined to talk to News 3. Investigators say the fire appears to be accidental.

"We have no suspicion of any type of wrong doing at this point," said McGregor.

On Friday, investigators returned to the part of the building where the fire started.The man leasing the building was using the space for storage and did not currently operate a business there.

Meanwhile crews were cleaning up Brazos Valley Bail Bonds which is next door. Owner Robert Olsen says he is currently looking for a temporary space to operate his business, which received extensive water and smoke damage.

"We're probably going to have to replace everything. Essentially gut the building. A new roof is what the insurance adjuster has said so far," said Olsen.

At least half a dozen fire engines from Bryan and one ladder truck from College Station responded. The blaze was out in less than an hour, but crews remained on scene through out the night dealing with hotspots. No one was injured from the fire.


At 9:27 p.m. on Thursday, February 16, the Bryan Fire Department responded to a fire at 209 North Main Street, in Downtown Bryan.

Five fire engines, a ladder truck, two ambulances, a battalion chief, the EMS safety officer, the Bryan Fire Marshal’s office, and the department’s mobile command post all responded to the fire.

The College Station Fire Department also responded with a ladder truck.

At this time, the Bryan Fire Department believes the fire may have been caused by a malfunctioning stove in 209 N. Main.

In addition to the damages at 209 N. Main St., the adjoining buildings (205, 207 and 211 N. Main St.) suffered light smoke and water damage.

Bryan Fire Department personnel are currently on-scene continuing their investigation into the exact cause of the fire and the damage to the structures.

The cause of a late night fire Thursday in Downtown Bryan remains unknown.

According to officials, a business does not appear to be operating out of that space.

However, nearby businesses, Brazos Bail Bonds and Catalena Hatters received smoke and water damage.

The fire was contained to 209 N. Main and officials believe it started on the 2nd floor of the building.

Bryan police had several surrounding streets blocked off to traffic.

The fire marshal is investigating, but the blaze does not appear suspicious.

Several people News 3 spoke to say they were very pleased with how fast crews were able to extinguish the blaze.

Firefighters had the flames out in under an hour.

Firefighters are working on extinguishing a fire in downtown Bryan.

A vacant building at 209 North Main Street caught fire around 9:30 p.m. Thursday.

No word on what started the fire.

The building is located next to Brazos Valley Bail Bonds and near the Varisco Building.

Heavy smoke could be seen for blocks in the downtown area.

We have a crew on the scene and we'll have updates as we get them.

You can also get the latest starting at 5:30 a.m. on Brazos Valley This Morning.

KBTX-TV Channel 3 4141 E. 29th Street Bryan, TX 77802 Phone: (979) 846-7777 Fax: (979) 846-1490 News Fax: (979) 846-1888
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