Hamilton

Red Hill Valley Parkway Inquiry to hold public meeting in new year

A public meeting for the RHVP inquiry will give the community a chance to hear from the Commissioner and ask questions about the multi-million dollar investigation.

The inquiry investigates a buried safety report on a roadway known for its crashes

The Red Hill Valley Parkway Inquiry will hold a public meeting in the new year for the community to get an update from the Commissioner and ask questions. (Samantha Craggs/CBC)

The Red Hill Valley Parkway Inquiry will hold a public meeting in Hamilton to give an update on the multi-million dollar investigation into a buried safety report. 

Inquiry Commissioner, Justice Herman Wilton-Siegel, will provide the community with information on the inquiry's status and process. People will also be able to ask questions about the schedule and procedures, and how the public can participate. 

The meeting will take place on Jan. 9, 2020 from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Council Chamber of Hamilton City Hall at 71 Main Street W. 

The judicial inquiry is investigating how a 2013 report that revealed safety concerns of the RHVP — in particular, the friction levels of the road — remained hidden for years. 

Family members of those who died in crashes on the RHVP have demanded answers from the city on a roadway known for its crashes. 

Council revealed in February that a 2013 Tradewind Scientific report showed that friction on sections of the highway was below UK safety standards. The report was put in a locked computer folder accessible to the city's director of engineering services and stayed there for years. It was only discovered when a new director started the job in September 2018. 

The city apologized to the public after the report was revealed and has set aside 7 million dollars for the investigation. 

Justice Herman Wilton-Siegel was appointed in May to lead the inquiry. In the summer, he launched a website to serve as a hub for information, as well as a twitter account that people can monitor for updates. 

The inquiry says it's still in the process of collecting relevant documents. 

On Oct. 30, the Commissioner issued a call for applications to participate. Any person or group with a "substantial and direct interest" in the inquiry or "whose participation may be helpful to fulfil the Commissioner's mandate" may apply. 

These applications are due before the public meeting on Nov. 29 at noon. 

Since finding the report, the city has reduced the speed limit of the roadway from 90 km/h to 80 and moved up its resurfacing work. The city has also put millions in improvements into the RHVP since 2015.

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