DES MOINES, Iowa — A fire at 35th Street Antiques in Des Moines billowed smoke along Interstate 235 during rush hour Monday and destroyed most of the building.
The Des Moines Fire Department arrived at the burning building on 35th and Rollins Avenue just after 5 p.m. It said the roof of 35th Street Antiques was ready to collapse upon their arrival, so firefighters had to attack the flames from above and from a distance.
The building contained 35th Street Antiques, two apartments, and a cabinetry workshop. The section containing the cabinet workshop was saved, but the fire destroyed everything else in the building.
The fire department said no people were hurt in the fire, but a dog and cat from the apartments are unaccounted for.
An arson investigator was on the scene, but the fire department has not yet determined if the fire was an accident or set intentionally.
The fire did not spread beyond the antique store and apartments, which means next-door neighbor Seth Nosbusch’s house was spared from the flames.
Nosbusch was not home when the fire erupted, but rushed back when he heard what happened.
“At first, I thought maybe another car had crashed down here,” Nosbusch said, referring to an accident in August 2021 when a driver veered off of I-235 and crashed in front of their home. “I checked out my Ring camera and saw there were fire trucks in front and said, ‘Okay, there must be a fire.'”
Nosbusch said he will miss having the antique store around the corner.
“You had to walk in like a penguin in the aisles. They had so much stuff, and it’s going to be a shame to lose all that,” Nosbusch said.
Nosbusch said the fire reminds him of the fire that destroyed the nearby Busy Bubbles laundromat in October.
“We drove past that all the time and saw it destroyed and torn down,” Nosbusch said. “It will be the same experience, except it’s right next to us now.”