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Rubbish fire extinguished at vacant Old Main Post Office

Chicago firefighters respond to a trash fire Monday at the old main Post Office. | Stefano Esposito/Sun-Times

The Chicago Fire Department is investigating the cause of a fire Monday morning at Chicago’s Old Main Post Office building in the South Loop.

Crews responded to 433 W. Van Buren at 9:50 a.m. to a report of smoke on the vacant building’s 15th floor, a department spokesman said at the scene. They found pallets and rubbish burning, according to Fire Media Affairs.

The blaze was put out with hand pumps and extinguished at 10:14 a.m., according to Fire Media. No injuries were reported.

The 2.7-million-square-foot building has been vacant since 1995.

City officials in May closed a deal with a buyer that plans a $500 million redevelopment of the historic, long-vacant eyesore that spans the Congress Parkway. The purchaser is 601W Companies LLC, a New York-based developer that also owns Chicago’s Aon Center and Prudential Plaza.

In February, Mayor Rahm Emanuel had begun taking steps to use eminent domain to force out Liverpool real estate mogul Bill Davies, who bought the building in 2009 and had pledged to bring billions of dollars to the cause of restoring the building. Davies died the day after the 601W deal closed.

Contributing: Stefano Esposito