Will the Parks Department Let Another Sinkhole Swallow the Greenway?

Photos: Ed Boyak
Photos: Ed Boyak

Remember the sinkhole in the Hudson River Greenway that took almost a year for the Parks Department to fix? Now there’s another one.

Streetsblog reader Ed Boyak alerted us and Parks to the new hole, located a few hundred yards south of Dyckman Street. Boyak said it opened up last week.

“There has been a wide depression collecting dirt in this spot for the past few years,” Boyak said in an email. “The now open hole is four to five inches in diameter and appears to be hollow underneath.”

The new hole is nowhere near the size of the Washington Heights crater that formed in 2013, but there is a discernible outline of how it could spread if it isn’t repaired.

Jennifer Hoppa, administrator for parks in Upper Manhattan, said in an email Wednesday that Parks Department staff were on their way inspect the hole. But there was no commitment to fix it.

“One of the many challenges to the site of course is mobilization given that there are stairs to that area and for full repair at a minimum we would need to arrange for a highway lane closure,” wrote Hoppa.

The Hudson River Greenway is the trunk line for bike commuting on the west side of Manhattan. In May the Parks Department and DOT closed sections of the greenway without notice — a routine practice that lengthens commutes and can force cyclists and other users onto streets that aren’t as safe for biking and walking.

The Parks Department didn’t repair the Washington Heights sinkhole for at least 11 months, allowing it to spread most of the width of the greenway.

“I fear the thought of dealing with another six-foot wide hole for the next year or two,” said Boyak.

  • Jonathan R

    The one bike lane that actually DOES go across town, and it’s got more holes than Emmental cheese.

  • red_greenlight1

    I’d be willing to bet 20¥ that they will.

  • SheRidesABike

    I call BS on the lane closure issue. One, I rode that section of the greenway for three years during morning and evening rush hours. If I try reaallly hard, I might be able to recall maybe once when traffic was backed up on the NB HH. So the HH has the capacity. Two, or perhaps One B, DOT or some other agency was constantly closing the left lane for some maintenance that I believe was related to the HH bridge.

  • Matthias

    There’s so much space there, I don’t know why they’d have to close a lane, but even if they do it shouldn’t be for long, especially if they deal with this before it gets worse.

    On the subject of sinkholes, there is a huge one on the east side (Bobby Wagner Walk) around 110th St that has completely closed the path. People have worn a path through the bushes, and there’s no sign of repairs coming. Just to the south another one was addressed (after being fenced off for a year or so) by building a plywood bridge over it. Are there any plans to actually fix the structural problems?


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