The South Broadway building that caught fire yesterday included a street-level bike shop, called Wheels n’ Reels, and a beauty salon, both of which have been closed for at least several months. A dance studio took up the second floor.
The city’s on-line property assessment software was not working last night so the owner of the building could not be identified. Jim Lemieux, who owns a floral shop next door, said a Methuen man bought the building six months ago, but could not name him.
The fire surged back several times through the evening even as it appeared under control. It broke through the roof at about 5:30 p.m., a half hour after firefighters arrived, casting a glow through the smoke and onto the street. At about 6:15, departments that had been sent home were called back.
Volunteers from the American Red Cross of Eastern Massachusetts provided hotel stay for two people who were displaced by the fire. They were also provided emergency funds for food, clothing, shoes and seasonal garments, according to Red Cross communications manager Ashley Studley.
Reporter Jill Harmacinski contributed to this report.