DENTON, Texas - A big section of the Downtown Denton square is gone after the mini mall section went up in flames early Tuesday morning.
The fire started before 4 a.m. on the east side of the square where there is a mini mall, coffee shop, bar and a couple of mom and pop stores. Initially, the flames rose several feet into the air.
A couple that lives above the La Di Da shop said the smell of smoke woke them up. They started knocking on doors and waking their neighbors up.
Scott Knudsen said the black smoke rolling in was unreal, like a production show or something. But he quickly got over it started to react. He knew something was really wrong.
Firefighters had to work quickly. They were concerned the fire would spread through the old buildings to the entire square.
In fact, the fire went up to four alarms and Denton got help from neighboring fire departments in Lewisville, Fort Worth, Aubry, Krum, Lake Cities and other small departments.
One firefighter was treated for dehydration but no other injuries were reported.
Although the cause of the fire is still unknown, the focus of the investigation appears to be on the mini mall. It sustained the most damage and its roof collapsed. The only thing still standing is the old façade.
The co-owner of La Di Da, a women's clothing boutique, said her space was "a complete loss" and it was covered it soot and the basement was filled with water.
Locust and Austin streets between Oak and Hickory streets are expected to be closed on Tuesday and possibly Wednesday because of the fire and investigation.