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University Beat

Sinkhole Snarls USF Traffic

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USF Parking and Transportation Services
A sinkhole that opened up on the east side of USF's Tampa campus has forced the temporary closure of a portion of Sycamore Drive.

UPDATE AT NOON 8/25 with details on expected length of closure.

As if navigating the University of South Florida's Tampa campus wasn't difficult enough during the first week of classes, a sinkhole has forced the closure of a road.

Sycamore Drive, on the far east side of campus near the Chapel Center, has been shut down because of a sinkhole that developed Monday afternoon.

University Police officials say the hole is about 3 feet wide by 3 feet long on the surface, but expands to about 10 feet wide by 7 feet long under the street. It's also about 4 to 5 feet deep.

No nearby structures are in danger, and university officials said Sycamore Drive will be closed for up to two weeks while repairs are being done. They're encouraging drivers to use either 50th Street or Maple Drive as alternate routes.

Officials aren't sure how the hole started, but the heavy rains that drenched the Bay Area have been blamed for the development of a number of recent sinkholes, including the reopening of a Seffner sinkhole that killed a man last year.