In effort to address sinkhole issue, Roeland Park approves video inspection of city’s stormwater lines

Roeland Park saw sinkholes open up in the wake of storms last summer. Photos credit city of Roeland Park.

The condition and material of at least 14,350 feet worth of Roeland Park’s stormwater lines are currently unknown to the city, an issue Public Works Department director Jose Leon is trying to fix.

Leon requested the council’s approval Monday to work with A-1 Sewer & Septic to conduct a comprehensive video inspection of the city’s entire underground pipe system for a cost not to exceed $60,000.

“We have pockets where we don’t know what we have,” Leon said.

The city will use the inspection to create a plan for maintaining, replacing and/or repairing sections of pipe throughout the city.

Councilmember Becky Fast asked if public works would be prioritizing areas that could lead to possible sink holes. Leon responded the city “absolutely” would.

Leon said the city was especially interested in identifying any aging metal pipes throughout the city, as those can rust out. Locating and monitoring clay pipes is also a priority, he said.

Last September the Roeland Park City Council was forced to take quick action to remove and replace a failed section of metal pipe at 57th and Roeland Drive that caused two sink holes in the back yards of homes. The council unanimously approved spending $105,366 to replace the corroded metal pipe and repair property.

Failed metal pipes also caused Roeland Park sink holes at Elledge Drive and Buena Vista and at Roe Lane close to Roe Avenue in 2013.