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Spend $810K in the short term to make Red Hill and Linc safer: staff

A consultant recommends about $10 million in safety measures to the Red Hill Valley and Lincoln Alexander parkways.

The report recommends about $10 million in fixes

City staff want to spend $810,000 on interim safety measures on the Red Hill Valley Parkway and Lincoln Alexander Parkways. (Samantha Craggs/CBC)

City councillors will vote next week to make $815,000 in short-term improvements to the Red Hill Valley and Lincoln Alexander parkways to make the roads safer.

The money can be taken from a reserve account comprised by red light camera funds, staff say in a report.

The short-term money would be spent on items such as raised pavement markings, speed feedback signs, rain-activated flashing beacons and upgrading guide rail end treatments.

Smaller fixes include trimming vegetation at on-ramps and installing oversized speed limit signs.

The recommendation comes after a consultant report on the safety of the highways, prompted after two 19-year-old women died in a crash earlier this year.

The report recommends about $10 million in fixes over the long term, including high-tension cable guide rails.

Overall, the consultant recommended $4,395,200 in safety measures on the Red Hill and $5,966,090 on the Linc.

Since the Linc opened in 1997, there have been 641 collisions, staff say. Of those, 128 were median-related collisions where vehicles struck, mounted or crossed the centre median.

The Red Hill Valley Parkway has seen 474 collisions, or about 63 per year, the report says. Of those, 131 were median-related collisions.

A detailed review shows that more than 500 vehicles a day go faster than 140 kilometres per hour and the 85th percentile drive at 115 kilometres per hour or faster. In most places on the highways, the speed limit is 90 kilometres per hour.

Other highlights:

  • The more extensive upgrades to the highways will be referred to public works staff to look at as part of a study about the expansion of the highways. This is part of a transportation master plan due in summer 2016.
  • Hamilton Police have told the city that they may need more money to boost enforcement on the highways. Staff recommend the city working with police and the chief to curb aggressive driving on the highway and report back every year.
  • The roadways are built with a design speed of 110 kilometres per hour.

The matter will be discussed at a public works committee meeting on Monday.

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