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Stamford's Italian Center Closes Temporarily After Two-Alarm Fire

Part of the Italian Center at 1620 Newfield Ave. in Stamford was damaged in a fire Thursday morning.
Part of the Italian Center at 1620 Newfield Ave. in Stamford was damaged in a fire Thursday morning. Photo Credit: Contributed

Stamford, Conn. — A two-alarm fire Thursday morning in the sauna area has closed down the Italian Center of Stamford until further notice until repairs are made, the center posted on Facebook.

The Stamford Fire Department responded at 6:07 a.m. Thursday to a report of smoke in a sauna at the Italian Center, a landmark at 1620 Newfield Ave. in Stamford located near the Merritt Parkway.

Upon arrival, firefighters found heavy smoke coming from the building.

The people in the building had evacuated and reported a fire in a sauna, the fire department said in a statement. A second alarm was sounded to bring more fire companies to the scene.

Related story: Fire breaks out at Stamford's Italian Center

Heavy fire conditions were encountered as firefighters attacked the blaze, which spread beyond the sauna into the adjacent locker room area.

Significant fire damage was contained to those areas with smoke permeating all sections of the building, the fire department said.

A total of 40 firefighters battled to bring the blaze under control.

Firefighters checked for further flames and then ventilated the entire building.

A total of six engines, including an engine from the Springdale Fire Company, two trucks, the heavy rescue, and the deputy chief responded to the fire.

Stamford EMS and Stamford Police also responded to the scene.

There were no reported injuries.

The city fire marshal's office was on the scene to determine the cause of the fire and where it began.

The last fire suppression units cleared the scene at 9:17 a.m.

"Due to a fire in the building, the Italian Center will be closed until further notice. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patient and understanding," said a Facebook post.

The Stamford History Center’s annual gala dinner, which was scheduled to take place Thursday night at the Italian Center of Stamford, has been postponed until further notice. Gov. Dannel Malloy, a former Stamford mayor, had been slated to speak at the event.

The Italian Center said on its website that it will soon post up-to-date information on programs and availability.

"Unfortunately, the Italian Center will remain closed through the weekend. In the meantime, members may use the fitness and swim facilities at the Stamford JCC. Please bring your Italian Center membership card and photo identification," said a website post.

Anyone attending an event at the Italian Center this weekend, should contact the organizer for more information.

The Italian Center of Stamford is set on 28 acres. It is year-round fitness and recreation facility, with more than 4,900 members. Amenities include a six-lane indoor pool and spa, a full-size gymnasium, fitness center, four outdoor pools, snack bar, six tennis courts, four illuminated tennis courts for night play, three platform tennis courts, a miniature golf course and a large playground area.

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