Sinkhole collapses street in Mount Vernon

Posted at 1:33 PM, Apr 25, 2016
Two days before the sinkhole formed taking out two lanes of the 100 block of West Centre Street in historic Mount Vernon, Vince Fava spotted trouble. 
"I saw it coming.  I think Thursday, the water was pouring out of the street.  I didn't think nothing of it, but it was really coming out of the street," said Fava.
According to the Department of Public Works, BGE crews putting in conduit beneath the street had reported spotting voids underground before the large crater formed, but the cause remains a mystery for now.
"It's to be determined.  It's a chicken or the egg type of situation,” said DPW Spokesman Kurt Kocher, “Was there a void that was created by leaking there from a water main?  Was it something where the storm drain... where we had a partial collapse of storm drain that caused the water line to sink?  We're looking into all that.  That hasn't been determined yet."
Crammed beneath that portion of West Centre Street, you'll find BGE lines, both a six-inch and an 18-inch water main along with a 33-inch storm drain and a six-foot sewer tunnel under all of it.
The city closed off the street to traffic on Saturday and had to shut off the water to nearby businesses.
"We were shut down all day Saturday, which didn't help.  It was a great day.  You know Saturday's always a great day.  We just got shut down," said Fava, "It is what it is.  It's Baltimore City.  We take our lumps and then we move on and we put our bootstraps up and we keep going.  The next obstacle we have, we face it and we move on and we keep going.  That's all we can do, right?"
The city restored water service by late Saturday evening, but there is no timetable for re-opening the street.
It appears crews will not only make repairs, but will also make upgrades to whatever underground infrastructure that they can while they have the chance to do so.

See also: Mt. Vernon street collapse causes traffic, water, electric disruption


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