The cost of repairing sinkholes in a pond behind the Moyer Recreation Center in The Villages has climbed to nearly a half a million dollars.
The large sinkholes opened up July 10 and drained a pond behind the recreation center in the Village of Pine Ridge.
The Project Wide Advisory Committee, which includes community development districts south of County Road 466, had been given an estimate that repair of the sinkholes at the pond would cost $276,954.
Bruce Brown of District Property Management reported Monday that it’s going to be closer to $450,000. It would include another $100,000 worth of grout to pack in and fill the sinkholes.
“We’re putting the grout in and we’re getting good compaction,” Brown said.
An engineer has inspected the swimming pool behind the recreation center and it has been deemed structurally sound. However, the pool, which overlooks the pond, remains closed.
Brown also said the soil samples from the site have been “promising,” indicating the repairs should hold.
PWAC member Steve Lapp of Community Development District 7 pointed out the area near the Moyer Recreation Center, named for former Villages Vice President of Development Gary Moyer, has been the scene of a previously costly repair.
“This is the second time in three years we’ve had a problem like that there. What are we doing different this time?” Lapp asked.
PWAC Chairman Don Wiley clarified that the problem three years ago involved a ground collapse at the ninth hole of the Escambia Executive Golf Course.
“The reality is this is Central Florida. It’s a limestone base,” Brown said.
Deputy District Manager Kenny Blocker said the District did not have sinkhole coverage at the pond.
“If they’ll insure it at all, it wouldn’t be cost effective,” Blocker said.
He added that each year when the District negotiates insurance coverage the possibility of sinkhole coverage is explored.
Wiley said that is why PWAC is a benefit to the residents so the cost burden is shared among many, rather than a few. If not for PWAC, Community Development District 11 would be alone in bearing the repair costs.
“This risk sharing is the benefit we are all seeing from being part of PWAC,” Wiley said.