A "majority" of the hundreds of nearby residents and workers forced to evacuate after a massive fire ripped through an under-construction apartment building in Oakland Friday morning will be allowed to return to their homes and businesses Sunday evening, according to the city of Oakland.
At least 700 people living and working around the fire site, which is located at 2302 Valdez Street, were asked to vacate their homes and businesses while crews worked to topple a structurally unstable crane marred by the flames. The crane was successfully dismantled Saturday evening, and some evacuees were given the green light to return.
A "majority of residents are expected to be able to return by Sunday evening" once electricity is restored to impacted units and city crews fully inspect buildings that may have been damaged by flames and smoke, according to the city. Those still forbidden from returning Sunday night will be only be allowed to return once inspections are completed.
Residents living at 100 Grand Avenue were already allowed to return home late Saturday.
The four-alarm blaze early Friday incinerated what would have been a mixed-use apartment complex expected to house 196 homes and up to 31,500 square feet of retail space upon completion next spring. The Alta Waverly housing project has since been reduced to a charred skeleton.
No one was injured by the blaze.
Traffic and parking around the fire site will continue to be impacted for the foreseeable future as crews remove debris littering the area.
A temporarily shelter at the St. Vincent de Paul Community Center at 2272 San Pablo Ave. will close Sunday at 7 p.m., and Red Cross services are relocating to 3901 Broadway, according to city officials. The office will be open from 12 p.m. through 5 p.m. Sunday.
Those wishing to learn more about the latest developments regarding the fire and the cleanup efforts are encouraged to call 510-238-2181.