That sinkhole that swallowed eight cars at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Ky., will continue to be on view to visitors, along with a couple of the vehicles.
Scott, Murphy & Daniel LLC, Bowling Green, will start work in September to construct a 35-ft wall on one side of the sinkhole and foundation slab near the bottom, then partially refill the hole, leaving the other side open to the remaining chasm.
The 60- to 80-ft-deep sinkhole opened on Feb. 12, leaving a 40-ft-wide hole in the museum's floor display area and taking eight cars down with it. The last car was removed on April 9, and most will be repaired. All are now on display.
"We have secured the foundation and center spire" of the Skydome, says Mike Murphy, chief executive officer of Scott, Murphy & Daniel.
"That structure will not collapse," he says. Crews have added 30 micro piles around the perimeter of the Skydome and will drill another five around the sinkhole to support the new wall, the foundation and a short retaining wall.
Crews drilled the micro piles to a depth of 170 ft to 200 ft before reaching bedrock, he said.
The Skydome, a circular structure 140 ft in diameter, has a 12-story spire that makes the museum an area landmark.
The plan, approved after the museum board reviewed several options, calls for leaving a 25-ft by 45-ft hole in the floor of the Skydome.
Visitors will be able to get an up-close look at the sinkhole—and possibly a couple of the cars it damaged—from a 5-ft-wide glass pedestrian bridge across the hole. The bridge, with handrails, will be supported by girders.
Crews removed less than 1,000 cu yd of dirt from the hole while removing the cars, Murphy says. "The material in the hole is lying on the cave floor," he notes.