HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – One side of Big Spring Park is not looking as pretty as usual lately.
That’s because of silver fencing placed around an otherwise beautiful area in the eastern side of the park.
The unsightly structure is frustrating residents who live in the area and utilize the park.
They want to know when the structure will be taken down.
WHNT NEWS 19 took action to find out.
Residents who live in the area noticed the fencing a few weeks ago.
Given the beauty of Big Spring Park, the silver fencing does not look so pretty.
Crews put it up around The Big Spring and Indian Creek Canal.
One person WHNT NEWS 19 spoke to wanted to know when the fence will be gone.
“I’d like to know when they’re going to finish the project,” said John Stanners. “I mean they started it, finish it.”
It turns out that it’s not really a project but rather a repair job to fix sink holes that have opened up in the area.
The fencing is to protect the public from the unstable ground.
Huntsville City Administrator John Hamilton said it all started when someone noticed a few bricks sinking. But it quickly became a much bigger and costlier deal.
There is a sign posted that reads “Please excuse our mess as we repair the park.”
City engineers had to take a closer look to figure out what the problem was.
“We actually discovered that we got water that’s escaping underneath the wall and running underground and so that’s started creating some sink holes,” said Hamilton.
WHNT NEWS 19 asked Hamilton how long it would take to fix the problem, considering summer activities in Big Spring Park will soon pick up.
“It’s just ugly down here in the park,” said Stanners. “I mean we’re getting ready to have Concerts in the Park over there behind the arts museum, but people aren’t going to be able to come down the stairs and walk this way.”
“We’re right now in the process of designing the solution,” said Hamilton. “I don’t have a specific timeline yet for when we’ll be able to actually execute the repair, but I think over the next couple of months we’ll be able to get those things done.”
Hamilton said it won’t be a cheap fix either. He expects the repair to cost the city around $200,000 and hopes it will be completed by this fall.
The weakened ground is right by the downtown YMCA and Huntsville Utilities buildings.
WHNT NEWS 19 asked Hamilton if those two buildings are at risk.
“There’s no issue there,” he said. “It’s water moving from the spring area across the park and then re-entering the canal further down. So, it’s very localized to that one area where the water just kinda cuts across the park and kinda dumps back into the canal.”