Building collapsed 'in a pancake,' says FDNY

- Multiple floors inside a vacant lower Manhattan apartment building collapsed early Friday morning, sending debris tumbling but leaving no injuries, according to police.

It happened around 3:30 a.m. in a five-story building at 21 Park Place, near City Hall.

The interior collapsed "from the roof all the way to the first floor, in a pancake," said Fire Department Deputy Chief Frank Leeb.

The cause hadn't been determined, though Leeb says heavy rain and wind may have been a factor.

City Buildings Department records show a permit for interior work was issued in September.

A partner in the building, Tom Grainger, says the work was minor and more extensive renovations were not yet underway. He said the focus now was on securing the building.

Nearby buildings were evacuated as a precaution.

Park Place was closed between Church St. and Broadway.

With the Associated Press

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