Make your home page

Fire guts Riley Park Shelter House built in 1930s in Greenfield

GREENFIELD, Ind. (WISH) — A morning fire on Wednesday damaged the Riley Park Shelter House, authorities say.

The Greenfield Fire Territory was called at 9:14 a.m. Wednesday to the shelter house at 210 N. Apple St. The park is east of downtown Greenfield north of U.S. 40.

No one was injured in the fire, the police department says.

“First arriving crews found a fully involved fire and went into a defensive fire attack due to the condition of the building’s roof. Crews were able to quickly knock down most of the fire and stayed on scene battling hot spots,” the fire territory said on Facebook.

The cause of the fire was not immediately known.

The 2,160-square-foot building was constructed in the 1930s as part of a federal Works Progress Administration project to recover from the Great Depression. The shelter house included a kitchen and bathrooms.

Greenfield Mayor Chuck Fewell, a Republican, says he hopes to bring back the building. “It’s a great building, and we are so sad to lose a building like this. This means so much to the community. This building is used for everything. It has the birthday parties, the dance classes. The parks use it daily. I can’t remember when it’s not used.”

The city’s parks department oversees the building for rentals and programs. The parks department programs will be moved to the nearby Patricia Elmore Center, 280 N. Apple St. The department is contacting people who had planned to rent the building.

News 8 photojournalist Kyle Fisher contributed to this report.