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Burst water pipe forces evacuation of Chinatown high rise

Archstone evacuationArchstone evacuation. Photo by Courtney Sacco. More photos.

A burst pipe in a stairwell of the 28-story Archstone building at 660 Washington St. forced all its residents into the chill night air as firefighters tried to stop the flow. This morning, workers have to try to repair extensive damage, especially to the building's electrical system and lighting fixtures; many walls are now waterlogged as well.

Archstone messHall mess. BFD photo.The building has more than 1,000 residents in 420 apartments; all were ordered out after the pipe broke around 10:20 p.m., the Boston Fire Department reports. The MBTA supplied several buses for residents to sit in on the coldest day of the year; by 3 a.m., residents without other places to go were brought to an emergency shelter set up at the Quincy School.

The department says the flooding began when an elbow in a pipe feeding sprinklers in a stairwell on the ninth floor burst, sending water flowing down stairs and into hallways and apartments.

In a series of tweets, the department described the damage: "Water throughout in light fixtures, elevator shafts, stairwells, the lobby and apartment floors 1-9."

Top photo copyright Courtney Sacco. Posted in the Universal Hub pool on Flickr.


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. . . woke up in a nice warm building to read this story. Brrrrrrr. Sorry to hear about this- must have been a nightmare of a night for those affected.

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Kudos to MBTA for supplying the buses for those poor folk to shelter in.

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I once looked into getting an apartment here with a friend. They were very clear to call it "Archstone Boston Common," but we insisted on calling in Archstone Chinatown. We also asked if the $2,600 rent and $450 monthly amenity fee for a two-bed included a negotiated discount at the porn store across the street. They were not amused.

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