Emergency repair work was ordered after a sinkhole opened up in a section of Ross Park on Binghamton's South Side.

Ross Park Zoo executive director Phillip Ginter said the facility was closed Saturday and Sunday because of the problem that developed in a parking lot off Morgan Road.

Ginter said maintenance workers had discovered a "small sinkhole" last week. City officials then were notified of the problem.

Excavation work at a Ross Park Zoo parking lot on March 28, 2022. Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News
Excavation work at a Ross Park Zoo parking lot on March 28, 2022. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)
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The zoo, which was scheduled to be open for the weekend, remained closed because of concerns related to the sinkhole.

City workers and employees of Albert Torto Construction Company were busy at the site of the problem Monday morning.

Crews were digging to the area of a 24-inch drainage pipe that apparently had broken. They were assessing the situation to determine how large a section of pipe would need to be replaced.

Ginter said it appears the work can be completed quickly and the zoo should be able to operate as planned next Saturday and Sunday.

Bids now are being sought for a replacement project for the main culvert in the parking lot area. That larger job to put in a new section of pipe is expected to be done over the summer.

Zoo operations are to be maintained while that project is underway.

Last April, city officials announced a 25-year lease extension with the Southern Tier Zoological Society to continue operating the zoo, which opened in 1875.

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Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com.

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