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Cottonwood residents detour to avoid sinkhole

Some residents in the Cottonwood subdivision in Franklin will have to take the scenic route upon entering their subdivision because of two sinkholes discovered at the intersection of Riverwood Drive and Arbor Drive.

Workers plan to relocate utilities as a result of the sinkholes.

The intersection within the almost 500-home neighborhood has been closed for further evaluation by the Williamson County Highway Department.

“The intersection has been closed in order to take extra precaution,” said County Mayor Rogers Anderson.
Two sinkholes – 6 feet deep plus – border a portion of the street at the intersection on both sides of the road. Samples from core drillings, completed this week, determined that the two sinkholes are not connected which confirms that the street has a solid foundation.

“The cause of the sinkholes is exactly what we expected. Crevices in limestone rock contributed to ground erosion,” said Chad Collier of Collier Engineering, who is heading the project. “We will move forward with repairs early next week.”

Collier said his team will relocate a gas line and an electrical box, neither of which does he anticipate causing a disruption in the services beyond more than a few minutes, if at all.

Because of Williamson County’s location near the Harpeth River, the area is particularly vulnerable to formations such as sinkholes said Collier.

“Crevices in limestone rock allow water to seep through leading to underground erosion, which causes certain areas to be more prone to sinkholes,” he said.

“Sinkholes are not uncommon, it’s the basic geological condition of Middle Tennessee.”

Cottonwood residents who live beyond the Riverwood and Arbor Drive intersection could detour to Cottonwood Road or Countryside Road as well as enter the subdivision through the back entrance at Cottonwood Road.

“It’s probably an inconvenience for residents, but we are working to get it fixed as quickly as we can,” said Anderson.

Posted on: 4/5/2013


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