A massive sinkhole on Finch Avenue West near Dufferin is being blamed on heavy rain and an aging storm sewer pipe.

An 80-year-old pipe, located 15 metres under the road's surface, cracked and caused water to flow in several directions, undermining the road's foundations.

"It's a galvanized steel pipe that eventually corroded and collapsed, and with all the heavy rains we had in the last three or four days, it started to undermine the road and washed away some of the soil," said Myles Currie, director of transportation services with the city. "And eventually the road collapsed."

The sinkhole is about five metres in diameter and more than 14 metres deep. However, the unstable ground has undermined an even larger area of the road.

The city isn't sure when the section of road will re-open, and crews will first have to stabilize the road before the pipe can be repaired. The hole will be filled with a mixture of concrete, sand and rocks. The section could remain closed for weeks.

In the meantime, traffic will be diverted in the following way:

  • Finch Avenue West will close at Bathurst Street to all but local traffic
  • Eastbound Finch remains closed at Dufferin Street.

While last July saw a near-record amount of rainfall, Ontario is below those amounts so far this month. However, forecasters say it is the coldest July since 1992.

With a report from CTV Toronto's John Musselman