Police mistakenly ordered the demolition of a part of the railway warehouses in the centre of Helsinki that were to have been preserved. The demolition took place in connection with the investigation into the fire which broke out in the building in May.
To facilitate the investigation, police ordered about 25 metres of the brick wall of the northern side of the southernmost warehouse to be knocked down.
"We didn’t know exactly what part of the wall was to be protected and what was not. This was human error", said Kari Tolvanen of the Helsinki police.
"It wasn’t torn down in vain. It was necessary for the investigation of the fire, but we would certainly have considered it more carefully, if we had known that the section was to be protected."
Helsinki Deputy MayorPekka Korpinen says that the southern brick wall will be allowed to stay up. He suggests that an open-air area for dancing could be set up there. He points out that dancing hobbyists have wanted such a facility in the city.
The city is also looking into the possibility of rebuilding the torn-down wall with the original bricks, which have largely remained intact.
In July, police in Helsinki concluded that the May fire at the warehouses was accidental, and not caused by arson. Possible causes were either a carelessly discarded cigarette or a firework. Arson investigators found that the fire had apparently smouldered for several hours, generating gases that suddenly engulfed the whole building.