Heavy, black smoke filled parts of the downtown core in Windsor Sunday after a fire started in a former bar.

Around 2:30 p.m., thick smoke could be seen coming from the first and second floors of the former Pour House Pub on Chatham Street. More than three dozen firefighters and nine trucks were on the scene to tackle the blaze. 

Officials say they had a difficult time controlling the fire because the three-storey building is currently under construction, with no separation between the floors. High winds also hampered efforts to douse the flames.

Emergency officals tell CTV news that the building is vacant and that no one was inside at the time. As a precaution, they did evacuate the neighbouring business attached to the building.

Ouellette Avenue was closed in both directions between Pitt and University.