PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - Don't look now, but the 500 block of Chestnut Street is sinking. Part of it anyway. A 5 by 10 foot stretch of cobblestones right in front of Independence Hall is slowly becoming a gully, through which cars and trucks bounce all day long. Drivers have noticed.
"Yes, every day. I go past it; up-and-down," said one man after narrowly missing it. "I hope it doesn't sink over us. We're gonna be in trouble!"
The ditch has been deepening for days. As we drive by on Friday, a National Park security officer called out that he'd been calling police about the road hazard for some time.
"Nobody seems to want to come out," he said.
Yet once FOX 29 started taking pictures of the mess, someone put traffic cones and a saw horse out in the street to keep unsuspecting drivers from damaging their rides.
FOX 29's Bruce Gordon reached out to the Streets department for answers. They told him they're monitoring the situation along with the Water Department. Once water figures out what's going on below ground, they'll fix it and streets will replace the cobblestones.
We can only hope they do a better job than the work done on the 100 block of Chestnut. Newly placed cobblestones seem to be tossed into the street with no sense of order. And piles of replacement stones sit on the sidewalk for weeks on end.
Vinh Hien Dang's son and daughter run the MTQ Vietnamese Cafe on this block.
"They don't fix it smoothly," she says of the cobblestone work. "They don't do it well."
Dang says the street is not helping business in this tourist district.
"It doesn't look pretty and I really think it could stop them from passing by."
The Streets Department says PECO is responsible for restoring the 100 block of Chestnut. FOX 29 will keep an eye on both projects. Neither visitors nor locals should have to put up with the look- or the ride- on either one.