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'You just can't fight mother nature,' Storm destroys highway intersection

Posted at 5:29 PM, Jun 26, 2024

DOOR COUNTY (NBC 26) — A broken culvert after heavy rainfall Tuesday morning proves to be an expensive problem. The Door County Highway Department can't provide an exact date for when Highway U will be prepared.

  • See a birds eye view of the massive hole in County Highway U at Rosewood Road
  • The Door County Highway Department is now waiting on a new culvert pipe, which could take days to arrive
  • The new pipe, if made of concrete, could cost up to $90,000

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story.)

It's something you don't see every day; part of this highway intersection collapsed. I'm Pari Apostolakos in Door County where the highway department is finding out how long this will take to fix.

Jack Chike grew up near the intersection of County Highway U and Rosewood Road in Door County.

"[I] used to ride bikes along here," he said Wednesday afternoon.

Now, the area isn't fit for bike riding or much of anything. Part of the road collapsed after heavy rain Tuesday morning, leaving a gap 12 feet deep and 200 feet long.

Chike said he's never seen anything like it.

"I was shocked, I was literally shocked," he said. "You just can't fight mother nature."

Door County Highway Department Patrol Supervisor Randy Dvorak says the dirt under the road eroded after a culvert pipe broke.

I spoke to him after he met with the Department of Natural Resources.

"They just want me to up-size the culvert so this doesn't happen again," Dvorak said.

He says it will take days to get a new culvert pipe at least six feet in diameter and 200 feet long.

It will cost around $60,000 to $70,000 for a metal one or up to $90,000 for a concrete pipe. Dvorak was unable to offer a timeline for reopening, but says it's a priority.

"[People] just have to be patient with us and we'll get it open as soon as we can," he said.

Dvorak says another spot along Highway U, half a mile away in Kewaunee County, was also washed away.

The highway department says road damage over at Bear Creek road should already be taken care of by mid-day Wednesday. In Door County, Pari Apostolakos, NBC 26.