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30-year-old family-owned business among 4 lost in Brandermill fire

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- Longtime customers of several decades-old businesses in a Midlothian shopping center found devastation when they arrived Saturday morning.

"I’m in shock," Chris Harper said.

Fire at Wilton Square at Brandermill.

Fire at Wilton Square at Brandermill.

Crews were called to the Wilton Square at Brandermill shopping center in the 13600 block of Genito Road for a report of a structure fire at 2:35 a.m. Saturday.

A video tweeted by a Chesterfield Police lieutenant showed a large flames shooting in the air and engulfing a single-story section of the shopping center.

The businesses that were destroyed were Pizza Hut, China Wong Express, Joy Cleaners & Alterations, and Nit Fairies, a local lice removal service.

Rich Johnson, president of the Wilton Companies that own the property, said an insurance agency next door was damaged in the fire, as well.

Rich Johnson

Rich Johnson

"It breaks my heart," Johnson said. "I built this place back in 1985 and it’s been a great shopping center. It’s been a part of the Brandermill community for a long time."

Customers stopped by and took photos of the businesses that they supported for years.

"The people that worked at the Chinese restaurant are so nice. They have the best Chinese food there and we love it," Harper said.

No one was injured or transported to the hospital as a result of the fire.

Johnson said his architects will begin designing plans to rebuild on Monday. He doesn't believe the fire was intentionally set.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.