It's January, which means that it's time to pick up the thread on the Haight's beleaguered infrastructure project.
You'll remember that last year, the neighborhood endured five gas leaks and two sinkholes over several months. Those incidents eventually prompted an investigation into the safety protocols of the contractor and subcontractor, Ghilotti Brothers and Synergy, respectively. The work was then halted until a hearing could be held to discuss safety concerns raised by neighborhood groups and merchants.
Since our last update, an administrative hearing was held on December 9th, at which both sides presented their case. The hearing officer sided with the city's argument that Synergy, the subcontractor working under Ghilotti Brothers, should be taken off the project due to lax safety standards and underbidding the job.
Now, there will be a public hearing this Thursday at 1:30pm in City Hall room 250 to "determine specifically what went wrong, how it is being addressed, and what assurance San Franciscans have that such repeated mistakes will not happen again," according to the meeting's agenda.
"Supervisor Breed’s objective is to ensure the community is safe, determine what went wrong and why, identify how the city can prevent safety problems like this in the future, and hopefully get the project back on track with the community involved every step of the way," Conor Johnston, aide to London Breed, said in an email.
There will be opening statements from Supervisor Breed and the neighborhood groups HANC and HAMA, and then comments from the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. The agenda includes questions to determine whether the plans were actually outdated, whether the sink holes were related to the construction, and why the gas line leaks happened multiple times.
There will be an opportunity for public comment, so now's your chance to be heard.
We'll be there and will let you know what goes down. In the meantime, what do you hope to learn from the hearing about the incidents? Take it to the comments.
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