Jun 18, 2008

Canadians announce location for new Windsor to Detroit bridge

The Canadian government announced its decision today on where it will locate a new Detroit to Windsor bridge in a press release from Transport Canada.

The Canadian crossing will be the Brighton Beach section in west-end Windsor, and the new crossing would alleviate frequent traffic jams and long delays on the Ambassador Bridge and through the Windsor-Detroit tunnel caused by the 17 traffic lights semi-trucks must go through in downtown Windsor to reach the highway. The Ambassador Bridge is the busiest commercial border crossing in all of North America.

"Today's announcement of the locations of the inspection plaza and new bridge brings us a step closer to an end-to-end transportation solution that will support international trade and, therefore, enhance the economies of Windsor, Essex County, Ontario and Canada,” said Lawrence Cannon, the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities.

The location is the culmination of technical studies, analysis and community input by the Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) study teams - part of a joint effort by the Michigan Department of Transportation, the U.S. Federal Highway Administration, Transport Canada and Ontario's Ministry of Transportation - on both sides of the border that began in 2001. The U.S. location will be located in Detroit's Delray neighborhood.

There has been intense debate on the DRIC study, and Grosse Pointe transportation billionaire Matty Moroun, who owns the Ambassador Bridge, is planning to build a new bridge right next to the old one. Today's announcement will most likely mean it will be a bridge to nowhere unless his intense lobbying efforts are successful on the Canadian side of the border as they has been on the Michigan side with people like state Sen. Alan Cropsey, R-DeWitt, the Senate Majority Floor Leader.

The Detroit International Bridge Company operates the Ambassador Bridge, one of only two border crossings owned by private individuals.

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