‘Come down here and fix it’: Business owners unhappy with lengthy repairs for KC sinkhole

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Business owners are frustrated over a massive sinkhole that opened up in the East Bottoms at the beginning of June.

People in this emerging industrial area said they’re left with a dead-end street and no exact answers from the city for when the sinkhole on Guinotte Avenue will be fixed.

“It’s just kind of been a nuisance. Our water was off for a week, and we had a cancel an auction because of it all, which was thousands of dollars just gone that we are never going to get back,” said Andrew Turner, owner of Andrew Turner Auctions.

Turner is among a handful of business owners directly affected by the major sinkhole, and he said it’s not good for business.

While normally his weekly Thursday auctions would be packed door-to-door, he’s now used to empty seats, as customers are forced to re-route around construction and train tracks.

“It’s been a pain in the butt. I come down through the River Market. I have to come all the way down, all the way around, over the railroad tracks and come back around,” auction customer Philip Klein said.

“It has been been a lot more difficult to get here,” customer Carol French added.

Turner said he’s working through the inconvenience, but he can only imagine the amount of business he’s missing.

“It used to be hundreds or thousands of cars that drive down the street every day. Now zero cars drive down that street every day,” he said.

After weeks of not seeing any moment or crews working, Turner said he just wants action, and answers.

“Somebody just come down here and fix it,” he said. “I don’t really need to know the details about why, who or when. Just come down here and fix the hole so we can get our street open again and keep growing our businesses.”

Public Works officials said the cause of the sinkhole was partially due to heavy rains and saturated ground levels, in addition to the failure of several pressurized utility lines, including water and gas.

Without giving an exact date, the department anticipates the repairs will be completed in three months as structural and utility repairs are made under ground.

A website to track progress on the project was created this week: Guinotte Avenue Sinkhole Repairs.

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