Coun­cil­lor: Fifty Road up­grades not soon enough

The Hamilton Spectator - - LOCAL - KEVIN WERNER

Hamil­ton will be im­prov­ing the Fifty Road es­carp­ment ac­cess, but it won’t hap­pen un­til 2022.

Sam Si­dawi, man­ager of as­set man­age­ment for the city, told Hamil­ton politi­cians re­cently that im­prove­ments to the Fifty Road ac­cess will be made to the road and slope for an es­ti­mated cost of $2.5 mil­lion.

Stoney Creek Coun. Brenda John­son, while ap­plaud­ing the cap­i­tal in­vest­ment to the ac­cess, said the work should hap­pen sooner not later.

“If you hit (the ac­cess) the right way you will lose a small car,” said John­son. She said ero­sion at the top of the es­carp­ment near the twist­ing and turn­ing es­carp­ment ac­cess is be­com­ing more pre­dom­i­nated with top­pled trees and ex­posed roots.

“It does con­cern me,” said John­son. “I want to put it on no­tice be­cause when Costco opens up, the traf­fic on that road will in­crease a hun­dred fold.”

The new Costco com­mer­cial plaza that is cur­rently be­ing built at Fifty Road and the South Ser­vice Road is ex­pected to at­tract thou­sands of peo­ple to the area, putting pres­sure on lo­cal neigh­bour­hood roads and Fifty Road.

Si­dawi said the cap­i­tal works project for Fifty Road in­cludes road re­con­struc­tion, the sta­bi­liza­tion of the slope and re­con­struc­tion of a new re­tain­ing wall. But no work is sched­uled un­til 2022.

In Novem­ber 2016, the city closed Fifty Road be­tween Ridge Road and High­way 8 for a resur­fac­ing project. Si­dawi said he is con­fi­dent the Fifty Road ac­cess will re­main safe un­til the im­prove­ment mea­sures are done within five years.

“I don’t be­lieve it’s a haz­ard,” he said. “We do plan on re­pair­ing the wall at the bot­tom of Fifty Road.”

Stoney Creek has seen its share of up­grades to area ac­cesses lately. Last year, staff re­moved loose rock from the side of the es­carp­ment and rock de­bris from ditches on New Moun­tain Road’s ac­cess.

And con­struc­tion be­gan on McNeilly Road in June and is ex­pected to be com­pleted by Oct. 31. Hamil­ton politi­cians have ap­proved boost­ing spend­ing on the city’s 17 es­carp­ment ac­cesses from about $400,000 an­nu­ally to $1 mil­lion start­ing next year, con­di­tional on bud­get con­sid­er­a­tions.

In ad­di­tion, the city will be spend­ing over $12 mil­lion to fix the Clare­mont Ac­cess, the Sher­man Ac­cess as well as the Fifty Road ac­cess over the next few years.

HAMIL­TON SPEC­TA­TOR FILE PHOTO

Im­prove­ment projects for Fifty Road in­clude road re­con­struc­tion, the sta­bi­liza­tion of the slope and re­con­struc­tion of a new re­tain­ing wall. But no work is sched­uled un­til 2022.

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