Progress made on Tulsa's downtown water main break


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Reported by: Sharon Phillips
Updated: 12/13/2013 10:27 pm Published: 12/13/2013 10:25 pm


Crews responded to as many as 12 water main breaks Friday but the two biggest were in midtown and downtown Tulsa.

FOX23 started downtown where the break is located near Fourth and Cheyenne streets.

Crews have been out here since around 6 a.m. Friday trying to get the downtown area fixed.

As of 9 p.m. they were still digging up parts of the street so that they can get to a 16-inch water main break.

It's not clear if the water break was caused by the weather, but the 16-inch break caused a 6-inch break to occur nearby.

Crews have since fixed that line but they say it could be hours more before the 16-inch break is fixed.

The problems city crews are dealing with are the several cables, sewer lines, fiber-optic and natural gas lines that run under Fourth Street.

Not only is this putting a damper on traffic, but it's also affecting nightlife downtown.

FOX23 caught up with Kelli Cox as she was heading to a Christmas party.

"I was trying to find a parking place at a meter and I can't get out on the street," Cox said.

We've seen technicians and other departments out here all day checking on their lines to make sure they weren't damaged by the crews working to repair the lines or the water pressure.

The city said engineers will be checking the condition of the pavement later to see if it's safe to walk on.

The city said it's going to take a while for crews to excavate the 16-inch line. So far, they are said to still be 12-20 customers around here without water.

Thousands are expected downtown Saturday night for the Parade of
Lights.

The water main break mess means the parade won't be making its way through Fourth and Cheyenne streets as originally
planned.

Therefore, organizers have now shortened and changed the route.

Parade organizers told FOX23 that the start and end of the parade will stay the same, it's just the middle areas that will have to be adjusted.

Last year, the area west of Boulder featured lots of crowds and lots of floats, but not this year.

In the meantime, people living and working downtown have to deal with a major eye sore until crews can get the area of Fourth and Cheyenne streets fixed.

FOX23 spoke with Chris Holt, a downtown Tulsa resident who isn't liking the mess of the water main break.

"Most of it has been streets closed off and water flooding down the streets, garbage getting spread around and that's mostly what I've seen," Holt said.

The Parade of Lights will begin Saturday at 6 p.m. If you plan on coming or participating in this year's event, we've posted the new route on our website.

As of 10 p.m. Friday, crews had been working for more than 15 hours to repair the lines.

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