Evanston fire investigators say the cause of a fire at an Evanston duplex is arson, said Tom Janetske, Division Chief of the Evanston Fire Department in a prepared statement. Fire investigators completed the preliminary investigation, turning the building back over to the property owners for follow-up and repairs by their insurance company, he said. 

The Evanston Fire Department received several 911 reports of a fire at 1813 Lyons, at approximately 2 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 3, said Chief Janetske. Upon arrival, heavy smoke was reported from the second floor windows of the structure. Fire companies entered the duplex to contain the blaze. Companies on the exterior of the structure provided additional ventilation and equipment support. 

Fire damage was contained to the second floor. Water and smoke entered the unburned areas; the residents were able to find alternate housing with family. Investigators are working closely with police but at this time no arrests have been made, added the Chief. 

The fire was struck around 2:23 p.m. Damage was limited to the one unit at 1813 Lyons, the other tenants returned home following the investigation. No injuries had been reported at the time of the fire; damage was estimated at $150,000.