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Saturday July 4th, 2015 1:07AM

DOT continues working on sinkhole in Gainesville parking lot

By Alyson Shields Reporter
GAINESVILLE - A sink hole at the intersection of John Morrow Parkway and Pearl Nix Parkway in Gainesville turns out to be a little larger than originally though, according to the state Department of Transportation. <br /> <br /> The sinkhole is estimated to be 20 feet wide under the asphalt and over 20 feet deep, according to Teri Pope with the DOT. It is in a parking lot near SR 53 connector/John Morrow Parkway and Pearl Nix Parkway. <br /> <br /> Pope said this sinkhole is unusual because it's on both private property and DOT rights of way. "We're having to develop the [repair] plan with the property owner so that we can work together and DOT fix our part while the private property owner fixes their part," said Pope.<br /> <br /> Pope said that access to the shopping center with Barry Menswear and Curves from Pearl Nix parkway is closed, however access to the stores is open from State Route 53 Connector/John Morrow Parkway.<br /> <br /> "The sinkhole appears to be on both Georgia DOT rights of way and on private property. The area has been secured with a temporary fence to prevent anyone from accessing the sinkhole site by foot or by vehicle," said Bayne Smith, Georgia DOT District Engineer, in a press release. "We are working to get the equipment needed so we can assess the area this week. As we receive the needed equipment, we will let you know when we expect to open up the asphalt."<br /> <br /> Pope said that DOT engineers conducted a preliminary inspection this morning, but currently there is not a time line for repairs. "Part of what we need to do is peel the asphalt back so that we can get a look and see the size that we're dealing with and determine the root cause," said Pope. Pope said they were waiting on specialized equipment called a trench box machine to safely begin repair work of the sink hole.<br /> <br /> Pope says they hope to get the asphalt peeled back and get a better look at the sinkhole this week to get a repair plan in place. <br />
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