A Kentucky sports-car museum whose floor collapsed into a sinkhole in February will be filled in, despite initial plans to keep a portion of the hole open as an attraction, the Associated Press reported. National Corvette Museum board members voted Saturday to repair the sinkhole that swallowed eight of the cars.
The Bowling Green museum’s massive abyss -- measuring 60 feet long, 45 foot wide and 30 feet deep -- became a popular spectacle among visitors. The sinkhole’s size made the Corvettes that fell into it look “like Matchbox cars,” according to witnesses who described the scene last winter. Museum officials said visitors’ curiosity over the sinkhole was a source of revenue for it, based partly on sales of sinkhole-themed shirts, prints and postcards. However, the cost of preserving even a portion of the hole as a kind of memorial became prohibitive.
“We really wanted to preserve a portion of the hole so that guests for years to come could see a little bit of what it was like, but after receiving more detailed pricing, the cost outweighs the benefit,” Wendell Strode, the museum’s executive director, told AP.
The museum had planned to install 35-foot-tall retaining walls and beams to keep the sinkhole from opening up more, but the effort would have cost about $1 million, double the initial estimate. As a result, workers will fill the hole with rock and install a concrete pillar beneath the museum’s floor to support its weight.