No injuries have been reported.

The tallest building in Chechnya, part of a luxury condo-hotel complex in which French actor Gerard Depardieu owns an apartment, was rapidly consumed by fire on Wednesday evening, Russia Today is reporting.

Reports from the scene indicate that as crowds gathered in the street to watch, flaming crumbs of the 40-story building's facade splintered and fell to the ground. Massive clouds of black smoke blew into the Chechnyan sunset.

The building, draped in a highly flammable high-density plastic trimming, is called Olympus and is part of the Grozny-City complex, which includes a handful of tall buildings in Grozny, the Chechen capital.

The tower has reportedly been evacuated. Hundreds of firefighters are attempting to extinguish the blaze.

Top image: Reuters.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Orange traffic cones save parking spaces on a neighborhood street in South Boston.

    The Psychology of Boston's Snow Parking Wars

    In Boston, Chicago, and Philadelphia, an informal code allows residents to claim a parking space after shoveling it out. But the practice is often at odds both with the law and with the mores of changing neighborhoods.

  2. Equity

    Where Amazon HQ2 Could Worsen Affordability the Most

    Some of the cities dubbed finalists in Amazon’s headquarters search are likely to see a greater strain on their housing market, a new analysis finds.

  3. A small accessory dwelling unit—known as an ADU—is attached to an older single-family home in a Portland, Oregon, neighborhood.

    The Granny Flats Are Coming

    A new book argues that the U.S. is about to see more accessory dwelling units and guides homeowners on how to design and build them.

  4. Transportation

    The Automotive Liberation of Paris

    The city has waged a remarkably successful effort to get cars off its streets and reclaim walkable space. But it didn’t happen overnight.

  5. A tow truck operator hooks up a damaged bus in 2011 in New York.

    Should Transit Agencies Panic?

    Many predict that new technology will doom public transportation. They’re wrong.