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Part of Route 611 to remain closed for months

Route 611 in Delaware Water Gap had to be closed last week following a rock slide, causing travelers to use a 10-mile detour, and it's not the first time.

DELAWARE WATER GAP, Pa. — This is what PA 611, south of the Delaware Water Gap borough, looks like now. Barricaded with road closure signs.

Last week's rock slide caused PennDOT to close the road to remove debris. While clearing the roads, they found more issues.

“There's additional rock that's loose, and for the safety of all of our motorists, we have to keep the road closed until we can get some experts out to remove all the loose rock to open the road,” Sean Brown, PennDOT Press Office 

Gino Bauer from Mount Bethel had to use the detour to get to his go-to restaurant: Sycamore Grille.

“I think the rocks, they're all, I think, too loose. Every time it rains really hard, it just comes on down. So it is kind of scary; thank God nothing happened to me, so I'm okay,” he said.

Sycamore Grille's owner, Lindsey Kidwell, says the road closure will affect her restaurant during its busiest time of year.”

You know, people see that big detour closure sign, and it deters people,” she said.

The owner of Sycamore Grille says that the last time 611 was closed, she saw a decrease in business by 15 - 20%.

”This time of year around the holidays, people are here, people are coming to the Poconos for tourism, so we hope whatever they can do to get it safe. You know we're in a mountain town, these things are going to happen, these are the kind of roads, and this is the kind of area. So we hope they can do everything we can to open up to get us back in business,” added Kidwell. 

And this isn't the first time part of 611 has been closed because of weather. In the spring, a stretch of the road was closed for nearly two months. That project wrapped up ahead of schedule.

PennDOT has not said when the project will be completed, only that it will take a few months. Traffic is being detoured on PA 512, PA 33, US 209, Interstate 80, and Business Route 209. 

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