The Honourable Steven Fletcher, Minister of State (Transport), and Ann Gray, vice-chair of the board of directors of Blue Water Bridge Canada, joined with community leaders and border agency representatives today to celebrate the completion of improvements at the Blue Water Bridge, one of the country’s busiest cross-border bridges.
“The Canadian Plaza of the Blue Water Bridge is an essential link between Canada and the United States,” said Minister Fletcher. “The Government of Canada’s investment will help reduce traffic congestion and improve trade.”
“Federal funding was an important factor that allowed Blue Water Bridge Canada to complete its infrastructure projects in a timely manner. This will ensure that this vital cross-border facility provides a safe, efficient and enjoyable experience for our customers today and into the future,” said Ann Gray.
Improvements to the Canadian Plaza are the result of a joint effort by the Government of Canada and Blue Water Bridge Canada, each of which has contributed up to $10 million to this major project. The work involved widening the plaza to accommodate the widening of Highway 402. It also included constructing new Canada Border Services Agency inspection booths and installing a dynamic messaging system to provide real-time information to commercial and passenger traffic. New storm water management pumping stations and improved communications, lighting and electrical systems have also been completed.
Federal funding for this project came from the Gateways and Border Crossings Fund. The Government of Canada accelerated its contribution under Canada’s Economic Action Plan, making it possible to complete the improvements sooner. This much-needed stimulus will help reduce traffic congestion, facilitate local border crossings, and complement recent and planned investments by the U.S. on its side of the border. Through such investments, the Government of Canada creates jobs, stimulates the economy, supports Canada’s competitiveness, strengthens the integrity of federal infrastructure and improves the safety of the travelling public.
The Canadian half of the Blue Water Bridge is owned and operated by Blue Water Bridge Canada, a federal Crown corporation. With approximately 5,000 commercial vehicles crossing the bridge daily, it is Canada’s second-busiest international commercial crossing for trucks and is the third busiest for total vehicles. This crossing is a key component of the Ontario-Quebec Continental Gateway and Trade Corridor.
Date: June 28, 2011