Cedar Rapids, Iowa News, Sports, and Weather
DES MOINES, Iowa - The damage from the Younkers fire will come at a huge cost for neighboring businesses.
Across the street, the center of a building is now a giant hole all the way down to the bottom floor.
The streets are covered in metal scraps and debris.
"There's nothing left to it on the outside," said Des Moines resident Michael Roy.
"I drove in from Colfax just to see this," said Linda Darrock.
The damage from the massive Saturday morning fire doesn't stop with Younkers. The blaze took its toll on neighboring businesses, including the EMC Insurance building.
"What you see is the fractured windows. We're not sure if it was the heat or the falling debris," said Harold Capps, with EMC Insurance.
The Hub Tower that has a mix of business offices and apartments right across the street sustained similar damage.
Almost every window facing Younkers is shattered.
Both buildings were evacuated. Fire crews said there were no reported injuries.
Des Moines firefighter Brian O'Keefe says making sure the fire didn't spread to neighboring buildings was firefighters' initial priority.
"We turned the hoses at the Hub and the EMC building because it's hard for people to appreciate how powerful or how hot it is, buckling and crackling, the glass 50 feet across the street," O'Keefe said.
The Hub Tower, EMC East, and the Des Moines Partnership Building had fire, smoke and water damage. Steve Flamm, of Premier Credit Union, said his office in the Partnership Building was saved by the barricade between it and the Younkers.
"If there wasn't our office, probably would have been in the same shape as the Younkers building because we're right next door to them," Flamm said.
EMC Insurance and The Greater Des Moines Partnership said they hope their employees will be back in their offices next week.
Des Moines Fire says tenants and employees of the Hub Tower will not be able to get back in until all broken windows are replaced.