Landmarked Flatiron church gutted by fire

Police at the scene of the fire at the Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of St. Sava closed off the block in case the destroyed church on West 25th Street collapsed. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Police at the scene of the fire at the Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of St. Sava closed off the block in case the destroyed church on West 25th Street collapsed. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A four-alarm fire gutted a Serbian Orthodox church at 24 West 25th Street on Sunday evening, following services earlier that day that took place for Orthodox Easter. Because the services ended earlier in the afternoon, no one was inside the church at the time the fire broke out around 6:50 p.m. but the blaze left the interior of the Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of St. Sava in shambles, burning the roof off of the landmarked structure that has been in the neighborhood since 1855. FDNY said that one civilian and four firefighters were taken to Bellevue Hospital for smoke inhalation and no other injuries were reported.

Police at the scene on Monday morning said that the street would be closed until investigators could determine that the remaining part of the building still standing was structurally sound and wouldn’t collapse. The officer noted that a collapse was unlikely but the street remained closed as a precaution. Only employees working at buildings on the street were allowed past the police barricades. FDNY noted on Wednesday morning that the cause is still under investigation but the fire is considered non-suspicious.

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Behind the scenes of Clinton’s visit

Former President Bill Clinton strolls along the First Avenue Loop on his way to the community center on April 11. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Former President Bill Clinton strolls along the First Avenue Loop on his way to the community center on April 11. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

Last month’s surprise visit from former President Bill Clinton to Stuyvesant Town, while kept a closely guarded secret at the time, was surprisingly easily thrown together.

Just ask Council Member Dan Garodnick, who sponsored the event on behalf of the Clinton campaign, and pitched the idea.

This week, Garodnick told Town & Village that he’d suggested to the campaign that “Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village would be a very exciting visit for either Hillary or one of her top surrogates.”

This was a reference to the former leader of the free world, with Garodnick also telling team Clinton that the community hadn’t had a president visit since then Senator John F. Kennedy. He’d campaigned for his presidential run in 1960 at a rally on First Avenue that was attended by thousands. In response, Garodnick said, “They saw the wisdom in that and thought that it would be a fun event to get the former president over there.”

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