BALTIMORE — Several busy roads in downtown Baltimore remain closed Tuesday and a portion of Light Rail service is suspended.
The closures are making for a big inconvenience, whether you're using public transportation or trying to drive.
Various city agencies met Tuesday afternoon to determine what the next steps will be, and one thing is for certain -- it's going to take some time.
Passengers at the Camden Yards Light Rail Station, who were bused there to begin with, faced additional hurdles.
It was a long day at work followed by a long walk home from work for Stacey Whye and Cheryl Alleyne.
"I was trying to take the bus from here, out to Essex, but our bus can't come through, so we have to walk that mile and that's a long walk," said Whye.
"(You have to) walk everywhere. You need to walk from downtown. So if you live on the outskirts of downtown, you have to go through downtown. It's an inconvenience," Vaughn File said.
"It's really inconvenient. Really and truly inconvenient," said Alleyne.
An inconvenience that will likely continue for some time especially for Light Rail commuters, according to city officials.
"Like me currently, I have to walk up the street six blocks just so that way I can catch my bus, so that way I can go all the way to Sparrows Point," Malcolm Ivanon said.
For those driving downtown near Pratt Street between Paca and Sharp streets, it was a mess. Delivery drivers were significantly delayed because of the traffic.
"We've been waiting on the truck since about 10 and it's going on 11:50, so two hours we had to wait on it," said Daniel Morgan, who was making deliveries to the Hilton Hotel. "It's pretty hard because both sides of the street are blocked off. We had to get permission to park over there and unload it, and then we have to get it right out of here."
According to the Baltimore Mayor's Office of Emergency Management, a series of events led to the commuting nightmare: A 12-inch water main broke near the intersection of Howard and Pratt streets, along with a tremendous amount of rain and a vault collapse under Pratt Street that sent a Department of Public Works employee to the hospital.
Overnight, engineers from CSX, DPW and the Department of Transportation used penetrating radar to locate and mark off areas where additional voids had been created underground.
"So far, we have not found any additional voids, but we're continuing to do those evaluations and we're starting to fill in the current void to stabilize it," said David McMillan, director of the Baltimore Mayor's Office of Emergency Management. "We are filling the void that remains from the manhole vault collapse with some fill to try and stabilize the area."
Workers are assessing the structure of the CSX tunnel, which was also flooded, to best determine how to safely resume regular Light Rail and CSX train service.
"It will definitely be a prolonged impact on Light Rail. We suspect the rest of it depends on how the efforts go to stabilize the area and what the engineers come back with," McMillan said.
Pratt Street is closed between Paca and Sharp streets
- Traffic on inbound Russell Street cannot turn onto Pratt Street and will be detoured to other routes, including Baltimore Street. Traffic on West Pratt Street must turn left onto Paca Street.
Northbound Interstate 395 is closed at Conway Street
- Traffic on inbound I-395 must turn right onto Conway Street to Charles or Light streets.
Southbound Howard Street is closed from Lombard to Conway streets
- Traffic bound for southbound I-395 must use Lombard Street to Light Street or Lombard Street to Sharp Street to get to Conway Street and access I-395.
Officials said some lanes may open up here and there, all depending on progress.