Photos and reporting by Stacie Joy
Updated July 3: There's now a GoFundMe for bar employees here.
The FDNY responded to a report of a fire just before 1 p.m. today at 204 Avenue B between 12th Street and 13th Street.
The department's Twitter account deemed the fire under control in 45 minutes.
Sabina Brunetti, the co-owner of B-Side, the bar in the building's retail space, said they had a new air conditioner installed. A worker was using a torch for welding, and the insulation went up in flames. B-Side was not open at the time.
The fire marshal deemed the blaze accidental.
The four-story, three-unit building is now under a full vacate order. There weren't any injuries, thankfully, and all the tenants (plus a dog) got out safely. For now, the residents have a place to stay, but there isn't an estimate to how long repairs will take. The apartments were said to be badly damaged.
Meanwhile, the bar will also be out of commission for an unknown amount of time.
B-Side was closed at the start of the year for an extensive deep clean and renovations, including a new ceiling.
She was especially concerned for her staff, some of whom do not have other jobs. She also is worried about the tenants whose homes were damaged, including the landlord who lives right above the bar.
Despite the setback, she vowed to return.
"We absolutely plan to rebuild," Brunetti said. "Again and again."