MIAMI – The Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department has approved an emergency road repair contract related to Wednesday’s water main break in Downtown Miami.
According to a spokeswoman from the department, Jennifer Messemer-Skold, Biscayne Boulevard remains closed from Southeast Second Street to Biscayne Way, as well as from Southeast Third Avenue to Biscayne Boulevard.
Messemer-Skold said the contract requires the road repairs to be done and the roads to be reopened by Saturday morning.
The 12-inch water main break occurred Wednesday morning at 300 Biscayne Boulevard Way.
Miami-Dade County Water and Sewer Director Kevin Lynskey told Local 10′s Ian Margol that it was an old cast iron pipe that burst. He called it a “spontaneous burst,” meaning it wasn’t a contractor working in the area that hit the pipe, but that it broke on its own.
“We got a look at it and the pipe wasn’t even corroded,” Lynskey said. “This was kind of interesting. It’s an older pipe and I thought I would have seen more thinness in the wall. We didn’t. It just literally cracked like an egg.”
Miami Commissioner Ken Russell said a sinkhole began to form after the pipe burst.
He said sand and sediment from the street was spilling into Biscayne Bay, which is bad for coral and affects oxygen levels for marine life.
“It’s so frustrating,” Russell told Local 10 News reporter Saira Anwer. “We take a few steps forward and then 10 steps back. Water quality is compromised in our bay and this is just another situation where more sediment is getting out into the bay, covering the corals, covering the grass and it’s reducing oxygen and killing fish.”
The good news is that the water from the broken main is not contaminated; it is a freshwater pipe that was broken.
Four buildings in the immediate area were without water until late Wednesday night, when repairs on the broken line were finished and service was restored.
The Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department issued a boil water notice for the impacted buildings due to the break.
The four impacted buildings are Met 1 located at 300 S Biscayne Boulevard, Muze at 340 SE 3rd Street, South East Financial at 200 S. Biscayne Boulevard and Citi Group Center at 201 S. Biscayne Boulevard.
Anyone who lives in those four buildings should boil water prior to cooking, brushing teeth, making ice and washing dishes until further notice.
The boil water order will be lifted once two days of lab samples come in with compliant results.