Owner closing Harrisburg tire shop damaged by wall collapse

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – The owner of a Cameron Street business says he’s shutting down because of a wall collapse that damaged his tire shop five months ago.

Howard Henry, owner of Howard Tire and Auto, says his employees could be killed if there’s a further collapse of the retaining wall behind his business.

Twelve employees work at the business. Henry said he’s looking for another location.

Henry also called on Gov. Tom Wolf to intercede. He says the city, the state, and the owners of the McFarland apartment building share responsibility.

The retaining wall for the McFarland parking lot, near the Mulberry Street Bridge, collapsed on Henry’s warehouse in May. After a second collapse following a rainstorm in June, the city condemned the 8-unit apartment building and cited the owners for not complying with a “notice to correct” the wall.

Henry’s warehouse was also condemned. Engineers have warned there is a risk of further collapse.

McFarland has blamed PennDOT for the initial collapse. An attorney has said the wall was compromised by work on the Mulberry Street bridge last year.

A spokesman said Gov. Wolf sympathizes with Henry, and the governor’s office plans to reach out to meet with him in the coming days, but the state does not have jurisdiction over the cleanup.

“There is no direct action the state can take regarding this matter. PennDOT does own an adjacent bridge, so the agency investigated the wall collapse and it was determined that the wall in no way supports the bridge,” Wolf spokesman Jeff Sheridan said in a statement. “PennDOT’s work on the bridge did not involve or impact the wall. Additionally, the collapse is not affecting a state roadway, so PennDOT cannot order the property owner to clean up or fix the wall.”

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