Fire in Fenway apartment building leaves residents homeless

and Jeremy C. Fox

Globe Correspondent

A two-alarm fire spread through an apartment in the Fenway neighborhood Monday night, leaving dozens of people temporarily homeless heading into the New Year, fire officials said.

District 4 Fire Chief Scott Malone said at the scene that the blaze at 25 Peterborough St. started in a vacant apartment on the third floor at about 5:30 p.m.

There were no injuries, Malone said, but at least 26 people were displaced. He said damage were estimated at $500,000, and officials were investigating the cause.

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“We don’t know if someone was working in [the vacant apartment] at that time,” said Malone. “We’re trying to nail that down.”

Tenants said that some of the units have been undergoing renovations and that a fire forced them out of the building for a time last year, as well.

“It’s a shocker,” said Judd Williams, 54, a 25-year tenant who was preparing to play a set at the House of Blues with his band at the time of the fire.

Michelle Samplin, 42, who lives on the fifth floor, said the building’s owners were helpful in assisting residents after the previous fire. As for the New Year’s Eve blaze, she said, “It’ll be memorable, that’s for sure.”

A spokeswoman for the American Red Cross of Eastern Massachusetts said that her group was assisting tenants and that first responders indicated as many as 50 people may have been displaced.