City of Savannah solving Southside sinkhole problem - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

City of Savannah solving Southside sinkhole problem

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

Imagine the ground surrounding your home slowing sinking, and no one can give you a reason why. 

Savannah's Southside residents brought this issue to WTOC's attention a little more than a year ago. 

People who live on Quail Hollow Court off of Middleground Road have been dealing with sinkholes on their street and in their yards,and driveways. Now they finally have a reason for those sinkholes, and the City of Savannah has a solution.

It will entail major road work that will cause delays, and perhaps problems in the neighborhood, but homeowners like Ken Gardner said they couldn't be happier.

His homestead has gotten considerably worse since we last saw it; he has a three foot gaping hole in his front yard. It's so bad that city inspectors had him put up warning signs.

The cause is poor development management. In the 1980s the developer used Quail Hollow Court as a dumping site for all the stumps and logs, and even an old brick wall, that they dug up from the surrounding land.

The developer then filled it in with dirt, smoothed it over and started building. When the wood decayed in the soil, it left a void. That created the sinkholes.

When Gardner learned the cause, he wanted to find the developer and ask him, "What were you thinking?" 

He had some other choice words as well.

Gardner showed us what his drive way used to look like twenty years ago, a smooth paved driveway turned into a broken and bumpy mess, but Gardner raised a son and toughed it out.

"Based on your affordability, you gotta have a roof over your head, and this was home," he said.

Homeowners met with the City of Savannah on Monday night and decided in the absence of a developer, the city will dig up all the stumps and filler and whatever else is under the current road, fix the problems and pave a new road.

Gardner admits there will be a lot of heavy equipment, lots of noise and even interruptions in their electric and water service, but he may get a bonus.

"I'll probably get a new driveway!" he said smiling and clapping.

Gardner and the city said crews should be getting to work on the road as early as next week.

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