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Water Tower Becomes Waterfall Atop River North Building

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(CBS) — A River North building with a history of inspections problems was evacuated Friday when an elevated water tank burst and flooded some offices.

The water – 18,000 gallons – came roaring out around 2 p.m. and flooded much of the interior of the five-story office building at 409 W. Huron St.

Some 200 workers in the building and in one next door were ordered out by authorities.

“Oh my gosh, it was so scary and shocking and exciting all at the same time,” evacuee Courtney Jurick said. “My biggest worry was that everybody would get out safe.”

Everybody did. The city was assessing the situation. Some streets were closed down.

Perhaps the owners should have known this was coming. In February 2010, the building failed a city inspection. Owners were told to repair, replace or remove the unsafe tank.

June 2010: another failed inspection. The order? Repair, replace or remove the tank.

And in December 2013, yet another failure related to the dangerous and hazardous southeast corner water tank.

After Friday’s rupture, the empty water tower was perched precariously atop the building — bent and seriously damaged. CBS 2′s Mike Parker reports the city was working on plans to have the water tank dismantled.

A water tower sprung a leak atop a Near North building. (Serafin & Associates, Inc.)

A water tower sprung a leak atop a Near North building. (Serafin & Associates, Inc.)

 

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