Motorists on 23rd Street should expect delays Friday afternoon.
A waterline break — the second in Lawrence on Friday — has closed one lane of westbound traffic on 23rd Street between Tennessee and Kentucky streets. City crews are on site to repair the leak, but the lane — the westbound right lane — is expected to be closed perhaps until 9 p.m. Friday.
Water service has been shut off to a limited number of homes in the area. City officials have put extra utility employees on stand-by to deal with the possibility of additional waterline breaks caused by the extreme cold, a city spokeswoman said.
An earlier break south of Kansas University disrupted water service to campus Friday morning, but service was restored by early afternoon.
Jeanette Klamm, the city’s utilities programs manager, said crews at 5:30 a.m. Friday discovered at least one leak, possibly two, along a water line near the intersection of Indiana Street and Sunnyside Drive. She said during the process of trying to fix the problem crews accidentally shut off water to campus, but it has been mostly restored.
Klamm said cold temperatures can cause the ground to shift and cause water line breaks. The cold and snow make it difficult for utilities workers to make repairs. The city does have a box truck at the site to keep workers warm.
“Otherwise it gets too cold and shuts things down,” Klamm said.
City crews expect to have the leak or leaks fixed by Friday evening at the latest, she said.