Pelham Gardens residents battling sinkholes

Residents on Tiemann Avenue in Pelham Gardens want the city to help them repair their homes which they say were damaged by sinkholes.Back in February,

PELHAM GARDENS - Residents on Tiemann Avenue in Pelham Gardens want the city to help them repair their homes which they say were damaged by sinkholes.

Back in February, Dan Raia got the city to patch up a sinkhole in front of his house. However, Raia says the city came too late and some of his neighbors' homes were seriously damaged.

One home was condemned after heavy rainfall caused the sinkhole last April. Neighbors say underground sinkholes broke the structure, which now leans on wooden frames.

Raia's house didn't suffer as much damage, but it wasn't untouched either.

"It caused my front steps to move away from my house and now my front door does not open and close properly," says Raia.

Raia says his stair rail detached from his home and his walkway is uneven. He says other homes have been experiencing similar problems.

"The house on the corner shifted," says Raia. "There are major cracks in the foundation."

Both Raia and John Fratta, of Community Board 11, believe heavy rains caused underground streams to overflow and the land to cave in. Now, they're waiting for the city to do something about it.

"We need to city to excavate the whole street to figure out what's going on down there," said Fratta.

Homeowners demand fixes for sinkholes, homes

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