A 21-story apartment tower will be erected where the 2017 condo fire took place

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – It was once the site of Dallas’ largest fire.

Today it has turned into a giant crater.

Land on the Northwest Highway near Preston Road will soon be a new urban tower.

Five years ago, a monster fire destroyed the Preston Place Condominiums on the property. He killed Jacqueline McDonald, 89, and dozens of families lost their homes.

What was left of the property – a parking lot that had been there for five years – was a constant reminder of tragedy and heartache.

In March 2017, the crews arrived to a chaotic scene. Three days later, McDonald was found in her apartment.

Over the years, an I-Team investigation found that the building was in serious violation of fire codes.

Documents showed it was “unknown whether the buildings fire protection system was working”.

Firefighters were heavily delayed be called to the fire of seven alarms and to the building hadn’t had a fire inspection in years.

This story served as a lesson to those of you who live in older compounds. Ask your homeowner associations:

  • What type of fire protection does our building have?
  • How often is it inspected?
  • And how much insurance do we have in case of tragedy?

Today, hopes for moving forward are in the hands of Hanover Company, a developer from Houston.

According to city documents obtained by the I-Team, it will eventually be a 240-foot tower with 21 floors and 213 apartments.

Heavy equipment will finally tear down reminders of the 2017 tragedy — at the time, Dallas’ biggest fire in more than a decade.

Lora M. Andrew