The sinkhole, on East 89th Street between York and East End avenues, was first reported at 8:32 a.m. in a city alert.
The hole measures 20 feet deep and about 15 by 15 feet in diameter, a spokesperson for the city's Emergency Management department said. A 12-inch water main and a six-inch sewer pipe are being eyed as possible causes, investigators told City Councilmember Ben Kallos.
Photos and videos showed the sinkhole stretching across the middle of the road as crews from the Department of Environmental Protection jackhammered into the asphalt. The city asked neighbors to avoid the area.
Two buildings have had their utilities shut off: an empty building under construction, as well as 504 East 89th Street, where 10 apartments were temporarily without water, Kallos said.
Con Edison workers found no impact on gas or utility lines, a company spokesman said.
Thursday's collapse came just days after another crater opened up on the Upper West Side, nearly devouring two cars parked on Riverside Drive. Both came after days of heavy afternoon rainfall that briefly flooded some subway stations and left New Yorkers alarmed about the city's ability to withstand extreme weather, already being worsened by climate change.
Kallos called the trend troubling, though officials have not given any indication that Thursday's sinkhole was weather-related.
"Every New Yorker's been getting nonstop alerts on their phones for flash flood warnings — we've seen our subways and even the FDR Drive flooding with the slightest rains," he told Patch. "I don't want to see a Miami building collapse happen in New York City."