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Crews battle large fire at Winnipeg building under construction

Click to play video: 'Fire burns at top of Winnipeg building under construction' Fire burns at top of Winnipeg building under construction
WATCH: Fire burns at top of Winnipeg building under construction – Dec 21, 2019

Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service crews were called to a large fire at a building under construction on Pembina Highway Saturday morning.

The blaze broke out early in the morning at The Arc, a mixed-use building on the corner of Pembina and Bison Drive, across the street from the University of Manitoba campus.

READ MORE: Winnipeg fire paramedic resources ‘severely taxed’ according to chief

Waverly West Coun. Janice Lukes says the building is supposed to provide much-needed relief for student housing demand.

“It’s going to be so good for the neighbourhood… I’m very concerned. There’s about 570 beds for students, restaurants on the main level.”

“The goal was for it to be open in August of 2020, for the university year, but this is going to delay it.”

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Click to play video: 'Crews battle large fire at Winnipeg building under construction' Crews battle large fire at Winnipeg building under construction
Crews battle large fire at Winnipeg building under construction – Dec 21, 2019

“The crews made an attempt to gain entry and supply water but we decided it was more prudent to move to a defensive position… we moved to the outside and set up aerial ladders,” explains WFPS Assistant Chief of Fire Rescue Operations, Ihor Holowczynsky.

He added over 100 crew members attended the scene, and they’re expected to remain late into the day to extinguish hot-spots.

Videos sent to 680 CJOB show the entire top floor of the building engulfed in flames around 2 a.m.

Lukes says falling debris had set off another fire on the third floor.

Click to play video: 'Fire crews respond as large blaze burns at Winnipeg building under construction' Fire crews respond as large blaze burns at Winnipeg building under construction
Fire crews respond as large blaze burns at Winnipeg building under construction – Dec 21, 2019

Firefighters had the blaze much more under control just before 5 a.m., but smoke could still be seen pouring from the building.

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No injuries were reported.

Southbound lanes on Pembina Highway remain closed as crews continue their work, but the northbound lanes have since reopened.

The Winnipeg Police Service is asking anyone attending U of M campus today to use University Crescent, instead of Chancellor Matheson.

Construction firm Ledcor says its working with the fire department and Manitoba Workplace Safety and Health to determine the cause of the blaze and assess the damage.

Click to play video: 'Smoke billows from Winnipeg building under construction after large fire' Smoke billows from Winnipeg building under construction after large fire
Smoke billows from Winnipeg building under construction after large fire – Dec 21, 2019

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