PennDOT has new solution for notorious Palmyra sinkhole

Lebanon

PALMYRA, Pa. (WHTM) – PennDOT has a new solution for a notorious sinkhole causing traffic nightmares on Route 422 in North Londonderry Township.

“This is probably the worst sinkhole that we have had to deal with simply because of the depth of it. I mean, we’re talking years and years of problems,” said Fritzi Schreffler, a PennDOT safety press officer.

The sinkhole is outside the Sinkhole Saloon and the Palmyra Bowling Center. According to PennDOT, it’s anywhere from 40 to 180 feet deep and close to 40 feet wide. The excavation work is set to begin on Tuesday.

“It’s basically a steel casing that has concrete down inside it. These 84 micropiles will go throughout the project to try and help stabilize the concrete slab we’ll put on top,” said Schreffler.

The work is expected to be completed in late November. Until then, the official detour currently in place involves Route 117 to U.S. 322 to Route 934 and back to U.S. 422. PennDOT stresses this is a remedy it will continually have to monitor.

“Inside that concrete slab, there’s going to be about 40 poles. They’re kind of an access for us to be able to drop cameras down in the event that we see any kind of depression forming in the road,” Schreffler said.

PennDOT adds every sinkhole is different, so this solution is not necessarily the solution it will use for all sinkholes in the area. But the reason Lebanon County has so many sinkholes is largely because of the limestone underneath.

The current solution for the sinkhole is estimated to cost about $4 million.

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