Shortly before dawn Saturday, Portland firefighters began battling a three-alarm fire at the 97-year-old Roseway Theater on Northeast Sandy Boulevard. They succeeded in controlling the blaze, but the result was devastating: a burned roof, a collapsed floor and an uncertain future for a beloved neighborhood movie theater.
“At this point the investigators are waiting to enter the structure, so the cause is still under investigation,” Terry Foster, a public information officer for Portland Fire & Rescue, tells WW. “I was unable to enter the front of the building. But looking from above, most of the structure is destroyed.”
Portland Fire & Rescue stated that there were no reports of injuries connected to the fire. At 5:48 am, firefighters entered the 7,000-square-foot building and found it filled with smoke. Commanders called for a second and ultimately a third alarm as the fire worsened, starting to burn through the theater’s roof.
Eventually, firefighters were forced to use aerial ladder trucks to pour water into the building and prevent the fire from spreading to neighboring businesses (the Roseway is located between a liquor store and Kim’s Kreations, a tailor and bridal shop). They got the fire under control by midmorning.
It will most likely take days to determine the cause of the fire, which required over 80 fire personnel to be subdued.