Stormwater Pipe Near Collapse at Palm Bay Road/Minton Road Intersection

PALM BAY, Florida – Brevard County Public works crews helped avert a major transportation headache at the intersection of Minton and Palm Bay roads by working overnight to fortify a collapsing stormwater drain pipe.

Emergency repairs forced the closure of some lanes on Palm Bay Road early Saturday morning, but traffic was flowing normally just after noon, Brevard County spokesperson Don Walker said in a release.  The 7.5-foot diameter stormwater drain runs beneath Palm Bay Road where it intersects with Minton Road.

The intersection caters to an estimated 70,000 vehicles a day. The repairs begun Friday and completed Saturday will help keep the roadway open to traffic and safe for motorists, said Brevard County Public Works Director John Denninghoff.

“We expect the temporary repairs to hold the road condition until permanent repair and replacement is completed,” Denninghoff said. “There may be further temporary repairs needed but we believe the we have weathered the immediate safety, traffic, access and drainage concerns.”

Denninghoff said some additional repairs are planned and should be completed by early Monday.

Early Saturday, crews installed a 36-inch pipe and an 18-inch pipe within the collapsing stormwater drain, which feeds to Melbourne-Tillman Canal. The new pipes were braced with sandbags, and then flowable fill – a mortar-water mix that hardens like concrete – was used to fill an 18-inch gap that had formed between the top of the stormwater drain and the bottom of Palm Bay Road.

Denninghoff said parts of the collapsing stormwater drain were more than 30 years old and there was water pouring through splits that had occurred within its metal sidewalls.

“The work crews performed extremely well completing very difficult work over long hours, protecting the public,” Denninghoff said.

Denninghoff also credited Palm Bay and West Melbourne police departments for assistance in monitoring road conditions and traffic flow during the emergency repair effort.

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