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Carlisle Events waits on IAC fire cause, reassesses plans

By , - Last modified: May 3, 2012 at 10:32 AM

A massive late night fire at the former IAC automotive interiors factory in Carlisle has the property's owner, car show producers Carlisle Events, waiting to hear of a cause and reassessing how the company might proceed with a redevelopment plan.

"We're obviously disheartened by the fire," Carlisle Events spokesman Michael Garland said this morning.

But the company is glad to know that no one was injured in the blaze and is just waiting for more information from fire officials, he said. The fire departments are tending to hotspots at the scene and investigations into the fire's cause will start once the scene is safe, he said.

The fire began sometime after 10 p.m. Wednesday in a building behind the former administrative offices at 50 Carlisle Spring Road and spread fast until firefighters got it under control nearly nine hours later, according to published reports. Some witnesses said the fire began with an explosion, according to reports, but causes are not yet known. Nearby residents were evacuated as a precaution.

The fire destroyed two of the dozen buildings at the industrial property and damaged others, Garland said.

Carlisle Events acquired the 48-acre IAC property in 2010, about two years after the Michigan-based manufacturing conglomerate closed the factory.

Last year, Carlisle Events said it intended to redevelop the property for potential commercial uses and were working with Hampden Township-based Delta Development Group on ideas.

The fire doesn't change that long-term redevelopment plan but is merely a roadblock to moving it forward, Garland said. The company was still working through ideas, narrowing its options, and hadn't yet settled on a particular path, he said. The fire will cause it to reassess those plans, he said.

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