A large sinkhole recently caused Marion officials to close a portion of Commercial St. south of town between Forest St. and the dike that surrounds town.
Streets Superintendent Marty Fredrickson said a motorist discovered the sinkhole Thursday. It is on the east side of the road where a stream flows under the gravel roadway.
“It appears that a section of the culvert had rotted away over time,” Fredrickson said. “We think the water flow through the tube eroded the dirt until the top of the soil collapsed and created the hole. There was no indication that this was occurring, but it had to take several years for it to happen.”
City crews notified county road and bridge department, and both departments participated in the road closure.
Fredrickson said the sinkhole falls under the jurisdiction of Cottonwood Valley Drainage District.
CVDD board member Rocky Hett has been out to seen the hole.
“It’s pretty big,” Hett said. “We’re still working on a plan to fix it, but we are going to have to drain the water out to fix it.”
Unofficially, the sinkhole appeared to be about 10 feet in diameter and it was about 15 feet deep, but the hole is getting bigger.
Fredrickson said the sinkhole “continues to collapse,” and for safety reasons, he urges people to keep their distance.