As darkness fell over the cit last Monday, reports of a large fire in East Baltimore started to trickle in. Eventually, images of the fire appeared on television in the same area where The Woda Group had been building the $16 million Mary Harvin Center, with 61 units of affordable senior housing and various services. "I was saying to myself, 'Oh, no. I know what burns like that. The only thing that burns like that is lumber, and the biggest pile of lumber that I know in this town is four stories of lumber at Mary Harvin,'" Woda executive Kevin Bell said. Sure enough Bell's instincts were correct. The project, on which the company had been working with Southern Baptist Church for more than five years, was about 45 percent complete last Monday. The following morning it was a smoldering pile of rubble, a symbol of the violence and destruction that erupted in the city over the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray from injuries apparently sustained while in police custody. On Monday, Bell, Pastor Donte' Hickman and several elected officials all gathered to announce that construction on the building could begin again as early as next week.
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