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Sinkhole Near Johns Hopkins Hospital Is A Growing Problem

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WJZ general assignment reporter Mike Hellgren came to Maryland's News...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)— A dangerous problem is getting worse. A sinkhole is expanding in a busy section of east Baltimore. It’s causing all kinds of frustrations. Mike Hellgren is following the repair efforts.

From Sky Eye Chopper 13, you can see how much the Monument Street sinkhole has expanded. It’s still not stable and is so dangerous, crews can’t measure the exact size.

“It’s quite a challenge for us to come up with a design, especially with the road continuing to erode and collapse,” said Rudy Chow, Department of Public Works.

The sinkhole is just blocks from Johns Hopkins Hospital. This busy part of Monument Street between East Bradford and East Montford streets will be closed for several weeks. DPW brought in ground-penetrating radar to test for voids in areas around the sinkhole and found no problems. But for many, it’s still alarming that a hole 50 feet deep could open on a major street.

“I don’t think our streets should be caving in like that. I think it’s crazy,” said Melanie Carter.

“I’ve never seen anything like it,” said an east Baltimore resident.

It’s expected to take nine days alone to stabilize and that’s hitting businesses hard.

“Yeah, it’s growing. Might come down here, they said,” said Nathan Peterson, who works on an affected portion of the street.

Taking away their foot traffic. Some shops are on temporary water lines.

“It’s definitely frustrating. We need people to come see us because we need some business right now. It’s hurting us right now,” Peterson said.

The sinkhole formed when a drainage culvert from the 1930s collapsed and is another sign of Baltimore’s aging infrastructure—which has been cause for concern lately after several large water main breaks, including one that shut down Light Street in the heart of downtown for weeks.

As for the Light Street water main break, Public Works officials said Tuesday they’re making good progress and they’ve almost got the new mains in but it could be up to another 20 days before the project is complete.

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