Sinkhole closes Blowing Rock outlet mall

by Michael Mosher on January 20, 2014

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A popular tourist attraction in Blowing Rock was forced to shut down because of a large sinkhole. 

The hole opened up feet away from where hundreds of cars pass every day at the Tanger Outlets. 

Workers believe the hole was most likely caused by the recent heavy rain. It is nearly 20 feet deep and about 15 feet across.

“We heard a pop and saw the bushes collapse,” said worker Mike Winebarger.

Workers at the Tanger Outlets Shoppes on the Parkway heard the noise and then saw bushes and a large portion of the median disappear. Much of the dirt is gone where several storm drain lines merged underground. 

“Not shopping today. That hole is huge. That hole is huge. A car could go down in there,” shopper Christy VanHoy said.

More than two dozen businesses at the Tanger Outlets near Blowing Rock are closed as a construction crew scrambled to build a temporary entrance until the sinkhole repair takes place.

They hope to have that new entrance built by tomorrow so the businesses here can reopen. For now, the sinkhole has become another attraction here in the high country. 

Workers put down sandbags around the hole to keep more water out of it to allow the repairs to be made a little quicker.

Full article…here

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