Southbound lanes on Spencer Street are closed this morning between Bourke Street and Lonsdale Street following a fire at the Neo 200 apartment block.
Early investigations suggest the fire began on a 22nd-floor balcony before spreading to the 27th floor. The Age reports 150 residents were evacuated from the 41-storey building, which contains 371 residential apartments.
Metropolitan Fire Brigade was alerted to the fire at 5.43am. The response was upgraded after it was discovered the building had combustible cladding. More than 65 firefighters attended the blaze. The fire was too high to extinguish from outside the building, so firefighters climbed the stairs to extinguish the fire internally. The fire was under control by 6.49am.
Vicroads is advising drivers allow extra time if they are travelling through the area and to use King Street and Wurundjeri Way as alternative routes.
For traffic updates head to traffic.vicroads.vic.gov.au.
The fire at 200 Spencer Street in Melbourne CBD started on a balcony on the 19th or 20th floor shortly before 6 and rapidly spread to half a dozen floors. Hundreds of residents have been evacuated. @3AW693 pic.twitter.com/KZF3U2Fsi6— Pat Mitchell (@patty_mitchell) February 3, 2019
Just by Spencer street station .. I honestly hope whoever is in there gets out okay!! #melbourne #fire — you feel so helpless looking on but the fire engines are on their way. pic.twitter.com/jYGYqSc0Wb— ʙᴇᴋᴀʜ ᴊᴀʏɴᴇ (@bekahjaynex) February 3, 2019