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Ambassador Bridge Twin Span Gets Canadian Permit

Ambassador Bridge Twin Span Gets Canadian Permit”

The Canadian Transit Company has long complained that Transport Canada was dragging its heels on approvals for the project as the federal government pursues its own six-lane worldwide bridge over the Detroit River, just a few kilometres west of the Ambassador Bridge.

Transport Canada said in a statement Wednesday that the Ambassador Bridge would have to be dismantled within five years of a new span opening and that the bridge company would have to make improvements to local infrastructure and public green spaces in Windsor. "There have been many challenges our company has faced over the years in pursuit of this moment. We are now tasked with the duty to construct a privately funded bridge with the hard work of thousands of engineers, steel workers, construction experts that will be employed to deliver this once in a lifetime project" said Matthew Moroun, with the bridge company.

The company already received permits from the USA in the spring of 2016.

He says replacing the 87-year-old bridge will be good for both the USA and Canada.

Some concerns expressed by the city, including the location of the west-end fire hall, appear to have been addressed in the terms and conditions of the approval, he added.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder said Moroun still needs United States approvals before construction can start.

"The Gordie Howe International Bridge project is separate and distinct from the plans by the Ambassador Bridge owners to replace their existing bridge", Heather Grondin, a spokeswoman with the Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority said.

The permit in question is the International Bridges and Tunnels Act (IBTA), which is under federal jurisdiction through Transport Canada. Canada's announcement today also reaffirms the plans for the Gordie Howe International Bridge, which is on schedule to begin significant construction in 2018.

Dan Stamper, president of DIBC, said the Canadian permit was the final hurdle for building a second span after the U.S. Coast Guard issued its permit previous year.

The difficulties auto makers and parts companies had in transporting finished vehicles and components contributed to Canada being bypassed by auto makers when they built new plants in the 2000s and in this decade, senior auto industry executives believe.

The US permit to commence construction was received in the spring of 2016. The Canadian government has vowed to finance that project after MI lawmakers refused to help fund it.

The new, privately owned bridge, will have six lanes, three in each direction, with dedicated NEXUS, FAST and bus lanes.

The bridge would bring traffic congestion between borders down significantly. The project will see the construction of a replacement six-lane bridge as well as an expansion of the Ambassador Bridge's associated Canada Border Services Agency facility. "I appreciate the continued partnership with Canada in making the Gordie Howe International Bridge a major infrastructure priority".



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