Neighbors frustrated by ever-growing potholes at old PTL site

Neighbors frustrated by ever-growing potholes at old PTL site


by TONY BURBECK / NBC Charlotte

Bio | Email | Follow: @TonyWCNC

Posted on February 28, 2013 at 6:38 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 28 at 6:06 PM

FORT MILL, S.C. -- Complaints about huge potholes causing safety concerns got immediate action once NBC Charlotte started looking out for you.

Neighbors say for months they've asked  MorningStar Ministries, the site of the old PTL in Fort Mill, to fix ever-growing potholes on Starlight Drive.

Starlight is a private road owned by MorningStar, but hundreds of cars drive on it daily with parents taking their kids to Sugar Creek Elementary School.

MorningStar crews patched two large potholes on Starlight Drive Thursday afternoon after our calls and emails.

Eric Kinsinger took a picture of himself fishing in the pothole in front of the old PTL tower before the patch job.

"Just to make a statement, it's a giant pothole that hasn't been fixed," he said. "It's at least seven to eight feet across and at its deepest point is about nine inches deep."

It's big enough, wide enough and deep enough for cars to drive into the oncoming traffic lane just to avoid it.  We watched several cars do just that.

"Like this one, just going into the other lane--everybody is used to it at this point," Kinsinger said as a car drove past.

"Usually it's a nice little game of chicken we are playing.  Who is going to go around first," said parent Tammy Tufty.

It's a game Tufty doesn't like to play with so many people on the road coming and going from the school with kids.

"Only a matter of time until a severe accident happens and someone gets hurt," Tufty said.

Another issue is the beating cars take if they hit the pothole.

"If you hit it, you know you've hit something," Tufty said.

"If you hit this area with your car, you're done," Kinsinger said.

The pothole has been patched in the past, but the constant flow of cars digs it up.

Tufty received an email from MorningStar when she asked them to fix the problem.

It said Starlight Drive is a private road with heavy public use, the road comes with a "use at your own risk" policy and repairs will be made as soon as they are financially feasible.  Also, that the repairs cost a lot of money, MorningStar is a non-profit, and if she knew of someone who would like to donate to please contact the church.

"I did feel like I was being asked for money to repair the road," Tufty said.

"It looks like they're looking for a donation to fix anything. If they're looking for a donation to fix a pothole, how are they going to fix that," Kinsinger said while pointing to the old PTL tower.

Right now, MorningStar is embroiled in a lawsuit with York County over alleged breach of contract when it comes to tower repairs.

Neighbors think nothing will happen on either end for years, except more delay and decay.

County officials estimate it could take hundreds of thousands of dollars to permanently fix Starlight Drive.

York County says it would be willing to take over upkeep of Starlight Road, but first MorningStar would have to bring it up to code.