ITHACA, N.Y. –– A sewer main collapse on the 300 Block Hillview Place, between the intersections of South Aurora Street and Turner Place has shut down traffic in the area until 4 p.m. on Thursday.

The recommended detour for north bound traffic on S. Aurora Street is to turn left (west) on Prospect Street, than left (south) on Turner Place. For south bound traffic on Turner Place, it has been recommended by the city to turn left (east) on Columbia Street than right (south) on S. Aurora St.

Nick Thomas from the City of Ithaca Water and Sewer Division said the collapse is due to the old age of the pipes, which are between 70 and 80 years old.

2019 saw the highest number of water main breaks, with one causing the 200 block of Cayuga Street to be closed for months after ‘significant damage.’ So far in 2020, this is the second water main break reported by the Ithaca Voice.

The city has more than 90 miles of underground water pipes, and a third of them are more than 100 years old, and some are approaching 150 years old.

Pipe age combined with “an increased trend in freeze thaw cycles due to climate change” have caused water main breaks to increase, the city said.

The road is on track to be open by 4 p.m. Thursday.

Anna Lamb

Anna Lamb is a reporter for the Ithaca Voice. Questions? Story tips? Contact her at alamb@ithacavoice.com