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(Updated: 5:32 p.m.) A fire that ripped through a downtown block Wednesday morning has destroyed at least six businesses and incurred $10 million in damages, city officials say.

Firefighters were still pouring water into the shells of downtown stores at 5 p.m. Wednesday, as the city began to recover from a major blaze that destroyed a New Haven landmark and sent the city center into a frenzy for the greater part of the day.

The fire, the biggest downtown has seen in decades, started in the middle of the former Kresge department store, in the center of the block between Center and Chapel Streets. It was reported at 6:33 a.m. and was under control by 9:50 a.m., according to mayoral spokeswoman Jessica Mayorga. The fire ruined at least six businesses, but no one was hurt. Firefighters were able to keep the flames away from other stores, apartments and condos on that block.

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