Demolition starts at sinkhole plagued homes in Palmyra

PALMYRA, Pa. (WHTM) – Construction equipment started tearing down six vacant homes along the 300 block of East Cherry Street in Palmyra on Monday.

The three duplexes have sat empty since 2013 when Hurricane Irene opened massive sinkholes.

Linda Bidding, who lives right near the homes, watched the start of the demolition.

“We’re glad to see that the borough is moving on and that all the legal things have been taken care of and that we can get to the root of the problem,” she told ABC 27 News.

While Bidding saw the day as a chance to move forward, others in the area weren’t so pleased it took nearly three years for demolition to start.

“I would have been down there every day,” Beverly Overa, whose sister lives near the sinkholes, said. “I would have gotten groups together, focus groups together.”

According to Palmyra borough manager, Roger Powl, officials had been working with state and federal agencies to find a fix to the problem and a way to pay for it.

Earlier this year, borough officials decided to move forward with a solution.

Powl said that borough officials decided to take out a $3 million loan in order to get work started.

Powl also told ABC 27 News that all but one of the families had sinkhole insurance.

Demolition at the site is expected to wrap up in the next two weeks and then construction crews will drill 410 holes, which will be filled with cement.

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