Jerome closes 2nd parking lot

Another parking lot has been closed as a safety precaution in Jerome because, a  parking lot below it. is sliding. VVN/Vyto Starinskas

Another parking lot has been closed as a safety precaution in Jerome because, a parking lot below it. is sliding. VVN/Vyto Starinskas

JEROME -- Another parking lot has been closed in Jerome adjacent to the subsiding parking lot for precaution.

The Jerome Town Council Tuesday night decided to take a wait-and-see position to its subsiding parking lot, but now the second parking lot has been closed to parking.

The original slide is "eating away" at the parking lot above it as it cracks, according to Jerome Mayor Lew Currier Wednesday.

A third parking lot adjacent to the sliding lot will be closed for the short-term this weekend for Jerome's Home Tour, and will be used for vans which shuttle people, Currier said. The town will re-evaluate whether to keep this parking lot open to civilians or not, he said.

ADOT tests two weeks ago indicated that the newly closed parking lot only had a "fractional shift" over the past 12 years, said Currier, but the slide is moving to the upper side of the hill.

Currier said that the council was given 12 different solutions to fixing the sliding parking lot, but right now they want to close the parking lots and see if there are any more problems.

Jerome built the parking lots to add parking spaces for tourists visiting the historic mining community. The lower parking lot, which has about eight spaces, began to slide and now the second closed parking lot will shut out about a dozen more parking spaces.

The problem would be very expensive to fix right now, so rather than move ahead on any expensive rebuilding options at this time, the council decided to wait two months and see where the parking lot is at, according to Town Manager Candace Gallagher Wednesday.

One option would be to let the dirt slide down its own property, Gallagher said recently. "We're waiting and watching."

The engineering report states: "the roadway is sliding and/or slumping down the hillside."

No homes are threatened by the slide, according to Currier. And the Sliding Jail is stable and not moving, according to Currier.

The town is going to work on the draining and see if that can alleviate some of the immediate issues, Currier said.

The cracks are starting to move closer the highway, Currier said. And the rain next week is not going to do any good, he added.

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