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Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Mystery tunnel explored beneath Centro school

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Expert have been called to explore a tunnel found under an elementary school in the Centro. Photo: Grupo Espeleológico Ajau

Mérida, Yucatán —  This city continues unraveling its mysteries.

In the courtyard of an old primary school in the Historic Center, an underground tunnel with unique construction has been uncovered.

A group of cave explorers called Grupo Espeleológico Ajau has been called in to investigate.

Tunnels are a tourist attraction in the area of the Plaza Grande, but this site is about five blocks south, closer to Parque de San Juan.

A mysterious tunnel confounds experts under an elementary school in the Centro. Photo: Grupo Espeleológico Ajau

Carlos Evia Cervantes, founder of the group, and María José Gómez Cobá, its current president, have donned hard hats to explore the tunnel.

They estimate that the tunnel dates from the end of the 19th century — which isn’t so old for the Centro. Of note is the good quality finishes on the arches and walls — the roof has a semi-cylindrical shape. But the tunnel doesn’t seem to lead anywhere.

Carlos Evia explores a tunnel in the Centro. Photo: Grupo Espeleológico Ajau

Architecture Professor Eduardo Cerón, who is doing research on these sites, invited the company to inspect the hole in the central courtyard of the Vicente María Velázquez primary school, on Calle 64 between 71 and 73.

“It’s a mystery as to its original use, and we have to investigate what has happened at this place and how it has changed over time,” Evia Cervantes told Sipse.

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