Hamilton boosts funding for escarpment access repairs, maintenance

News Jun 20, 2017 by Kevin Werner Hamilton Mountain News

Hamilton Mountain Coun. Tom Jackson is calling the city’s decision to increase the escarpment budget to fix persistent landslides and block accesses a “new era.”

Public works staff is proposing to spend about $12 million on fixing up Claremont Access, the Sherman access and Fifty Road over the next few years. In addition, Sam Sidawi, manager of asset management said he is proposing to provide $1 million for escarpment maintenance in the 2018 budget for needed studies a substantial increase from the $400,000 in the past. Those studies will include investigating drainage issues, rock scaling, installing additional rock fencing, he said.

“I think the data and the evidence have pointed to the fact we are in a new era in time,” said Jackson. “We need to put more resources into (escarpment accesses).”

In addition, Sidawi said the city will be collaborating with McMaster University Professor of Earth Sciences Carolyn Eyles, to study the escarpment’s erosion and the impact climate change is having on the natural structure.

“We will be monitoring the escarpment face on a regular basis,” said Sidawi.

Kate Fraser, chair of the East Mountain Community, along with Karen MacDonald, outlined to the public works committee June 19, that more resources needs to be invested by the city to address the impact climate change is having on the escarpment.

Jackson said residents along the escarpment have been raising “alarm bells” over the last few years about the accesses being repeatedly closed due to rock slides and erosion.

“They need to have some future piece of mind, especially those that live along the escarpment,” said Jackson. “They are raising legitimate concerns. They simply want piece of mind, safe and security.”

Sidawi said those residents should feel comfortable now that the city will be actively studying and maintaining the 17 accesses along the escarpment.

Hamilton has already spent about $1.35 million on short-term repairs for the Claremont Access wall. The city closed the access in November to make urgent repairs after a loose wall was discovered by a crew cutting overhanging trees.

Sidawi said work will continue over the next five years to remove the remaining portion of the bin walls along the Claremont Access in the vicinity of where the wall repairs were done. He said the walls were constructed in the 1960s and are nearing the end of their lifespan.

“They will be removed in the next 10 years,” he said.

He said work is expected to start this year along the Sherman Access for “renewal and replacement” of some of the walls, while also extending the wall.

In late May, the east leg of the Sherman Access was closed after boulders fell from the escarpment. Major repair work on the retaining wall beneath the west leg roadway was already scheduled for this summer.

In addition, Fifty Road is scheduled to be reconstructed, but not until 2022. Despite Stoney Creek Coun. Brenda Johnson’s “concerns” about the roadway and the erosion problems along the Bruce Trail, Sidawi said he didn’t believe it was a “hazard” to the public. He said plans are underway to repairing the wall at the bottom of Fifty Road.

Hamilton boosts funding for escarpment access repairs, maintenance

News Jun 20, 2017 by Kevin Werner Hamilton Mountain News

Hamilton Mountain Coun. Tom Jackson is calling the city’s decision to increase the escarpment budget to fix persistent landslides and block accesses a “new era.”

Public works staff is proposing to spend about $12 million on fixing up Claremont Access, the Sherman access and Fifty Road over the next few years. In addition, Sam Sidawi, manager of asset management said he is proposing to provide $1 million for escarpment maintenance in the 2018 budget for needed studies a substantial increase from the $400,000 in the past. Those studies will include investigating drainage issues, rock scaling, installing additional rock fencing, he said.

“I think the data and the evidence have pointed to the fact we are in a new era in time,” said Jackson. “We need to put more resources into (escarpment accesses).”

In addition, Sidawi said the city will be collaborating with McMaster University Professor of Earth Sciences Carolyn Eyles, to study the escarpment’s erosion and the impact climate change is having on the natural structure.

“We will be monitoring the escarpment face on a regular basis,” said Sidawi.

Kate Fraser, chair of the East Mountain Community, along with Karen MacDonald, outlined to the public works committee June 19, that more resources needs to be invested by the city to address the impact climate change is having on the escarpment.

Jackson said residents along the escarpment have been raising “alarm bells” over the last few years about the accesses being repeatedly closed due to rock slides and erosion.

“They need to have some future piece of mind, especially those that live along the escarpment,” said Jackson. “They are raising legitimate concerns. They simply want piece of mind, safe and security.”

Sidawi said those residents should feel comfortable now that the city will be actively studying and maintaining the 17 accesses along the escarpment.

Hamilton has already spent about $1.35 million on short-term repairs for the Claremont Access wall. The city closed the access in November to make urgent repairs after a loose wall was discovered by a crew cutting overhanging trees.

Sidawi said work will continue over the next five years to remove the remaining portion of the bin walls along the Claremont Access in the vicinity of where the wall repairs were done. He said the walls were constructed in the 1960s and are nearing the end of their lifespan.

“They will be removed in the next 10 years,” he said.

He said work is expected to start this year along the Sherman Access for “renewal and replacement” of some of the walls, while also extending the wall.

In late May, the east leg of the Sherman Access was closed after boulders fell from the escarpment. Major repair work on the retaining wall beneath the west leg roadway was already scheduled for this summer.

In addition, Fifty Road is scheduled to be reconstructed, but not until 2022. Despite Stoney Creek Coun. Brenda Johnson’s “concerns” about the roadway and the erosion problems along the Bruce Trail, Sidawi said he didn’t believe it was a “hazard” to the public. He said plans are underway to repairing the wall at the bottom of Fifty Road.

Hamilton boosts funding for escarpment access repairs, maintenance

News Jun 20, 2017 by Kevin Werner Hamilton Mountain News

Hamilton Mountain Coun. Tom Jackson is calling the city’s decision to increase the escarpment budget to fix persistent landslides and block accesses a “new era.”

Public works staff is proposing to spend about $12 million on fixing up Claremont Access, the Sherman access and Fifty Road over the next few years. In addition, Sam Sidawi, manager of asset management said he is proposing to provide $1 million for escarpment maintenance in the 2018 budget for needed studies a substantial increase from the $400,000 in the past. Those studies will include investigating drainage issues, rock scaling, installing additional rock fencing, he said.

“I think the data and the evidence have pointed to the fact we are in a new era in time,” said Jackson. “We need to put more resources into (escarpment accesses).”

In addition, Sidawi said the city will be collaborating with McMaster University Professor of Earth Sciences Carolyn Eyles, to study the escarpment’s erosion and the impact climate change is having on the natural structure.

“We will be monitoring the escarpment face on a regular basis,” said Sidawi.

Kate Fraser, chair of the East Mountain Community, along with Karen MacDonald, outlined to the public works committee June 19, that more resources needs to be invested by the city to address the impact climate change is having on the escarpment.

Jackson said residents along the escarpment have been raising “alarm bells” over the last few years about the accesses being repeatedly closed due to rock slides and erosion.

“They need to have some future piece of mind, especially those that live along the escarpment,” said Jackson. “They are raising legitimate concerns. They simply want piece of mind, safe and security.”

Sidawi said those residents should feel comfortable now that the city will be actively studying and maintaining the 17 accesses along the escarpment.

Hamilton has already spent about $1.35 million on short-term repairs for the Claremont Access wall. The city closed the access in November to make urgent repairs after a loose wall was discovered by a crew cutting overhanging trees.

Sidawi said work will continue over the next five years to remove the remaining portion of the bin walls along the Claremont Access in the vicinity of where the wall repairs were done. He said the walls were constructed in the 1960s and are nearing the end of their lifespan.

“They will be removed in the next 10 years,” he said.

He said work is expected to start this year along the Sherman Access for “renewal and replacement” of some of the walls, while also extending the wall.

In late May, the east leg of the Sherman Access was closed after boulders fell from the escarpment. Major repair work on the retaining wall beneath the west leg roadway was already scheduled for this summer.

In addition, Fifty Road is scheduled to be reconstructed, but not until 2022. Despite Stoney Creek Coun. Brenda Johnson’s “concerns” about the roadway and the erosion problems along the Bruce Trail, Sidawi said he didn’t believe it was a “hazard” to the public. He said plans are underway to repairing the wall at the bottom of Fifty Road.