Bill Capo / Action Reporter
NEW ORLEANS -- Rain or shine, you can bet the 23 hundred block of Calhoun Street will be wet, with a large section soaked, and puddles deep enough to splash pedestrians, including students trying to get to classes at area universities.
"It's irritating, because we'll dress up for different speaker events, or job interviews, or things like that, and if you're wearing a suit, and people splash when they're driving by, so you get your clothes messed up," said business major Clifford Mintz.
But the big worry is whether a broken high-pressure water pipe under the road could be washing away the foundation that supports the concrete, and neighbors are already seeing signs the center of the street is sinking.
"The collapsing of the street," complained Bill Mumme. "Whenever you have a flow which is equal to, from what is coming up to the top, several garden hoses running constantly since August."
"It's awful because the street is cracking further, and I've told them that, that it's getting worse," said Carol Caplan. "The street is getting worse. The leak is getting worse, of course, but the street is getting worse, which scares me. Are we going to wait until a car falls in."
Caplan has been calling the Sewerage & Water Board about this since August.
"Evidently their new gimmick is when you call they say, 'we're coming today, it's already on the book,' because that's what they tell me every time they call," she said.
"It's been a management of neglect, or a management that is not focused on quality," said Mumme. "What's happened to the values of the management system of the city?"
Now at the very least this is miserable customer service on the part of the Sewerage & Water Board, to let this leak sit here for months, and let people get splashed.
But there is a bigger concern here -- when will this street collapse? That's why I'm contacting the Sewerage & Water Board, asking them to actually make this a priority, get a crew out here and get this leak fixed, before something else happens.
"They would have saved money had they done it in the beginning before the street started falling in," Caplan said.
I'll let you know what happens.