KENOSHA -- An arson investigation is underway after multiple fires broke out Tuesday night, April 2 at the former Dairyland Greyhound Park in Kenosha. Firefighters arrived on scene around 8 p.m.
Upon arrival, crews found three separate fires burning inside the building.
Once the flames were extinguished, the Kenosha Fire Department's Battalion Chief says the evidence of arson was clear.
"It’s obvious that people had been piling different combustibles and putting them in a position where they could start them on fire," said Matthew Haerter, City of Kenosha Fire Department Battalion Chief.
The track was being demolished to make way for an industrial park.
"The old Dairyland dog track that is currently being dismantled has caught fire. The building is being disassembled for future development, and this is hampering our crews' ability to extinguish and do a primary search for victims," said Kenosha Fire Chief Charles Leipzig Jr.
South Shore Fire officials confirmed they sent a "collapse team" to the scene. KPD officers responded to the scene to assist with traffic control.
The building is 300,000 square feet -- built in 1989. The property is 228 acres. The greyhound park closed in 2009. In late 2013, it was proposed to be the home of the Menominee Tribe's $800 million Hard Rock International casino project. In early 2015, former Governor Scott Walker rejected the proposal. In August of 2015, the property went on the market. It was sold in September 2017 to a developer for $12.5 million.
Records show a permit for commercial razing was approved in January 2019.