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Investigation into who caused 45 Central blaze continues

UPDATE: Developer knocks down burned structures and plans to rebuild
by: Submitted photo, Firefighters were greeted to the sight of a townhome completely engulfed in flames after arriving at a fire at 45 Central late Tuesday night.

Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue investigators were unable to determine the cause of a Tuesday night fire that damaged or destroyed four townhomes at 45 Central, a new development being constructed across the street from Nike's World Campus.

After thorough examination of material evidence and burn patterns, fire investigators closed their case, officials said Friday afternoon.

However, detectives with the Beaverton Police Department will continue their investigation.

Shortly before midnight, several motorists called to say the townhomes, located at the intersection of Murray Boulevard and Jenkins Road, were on fire, according to Cassandra Ulven, a fire district spokeswoman.

When fire crews arrived, heavy flames had engulfed one of the homes, Ulven said.

The homes were in the initial phase of construction with only framing and exterior walls completed. No utilities had yet been installed and there were no roofs on the homes, which were being built as display models, Ulven said.

Firefighters had the fire under control within 15 minutes. Although most of the blaze occurred in two of the structures, all four sustained heat damage with losses estimated at $80,000, Ulven said. The developer knocked down the burned structures and now plans to rebuild them.

When completed, the site will contain 122 three-story homes.