A bridge not too far at all

CORNWALL, Ont. — Here’s a Canada-U.S. bridge project that looks like it’s actually going to happen.

On Tuesday, Federal House Leader John Baird announced that Ottawa will pay for the construction of a new North Channel Bridge at the Seaway International Bridge in this Ontario city.

The $75-million project will see a new bridge connecting the City of Cornwall to Cornwall Island, as well as the demolition of the current structure and ramps.

While the current bridge remains safe for the traveling public, the new bridge will ensure the long-term viability of this important border crossing, Baird noted.

"The Seaway International Crossing at Cornwall is an important link between Canada and the United States," said Baird. "Through this initiative, our government is creating local jobs and supporting the future economic growth of the region."

Added MP for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry Guy Lauzon, "this project will help reduce traffic congestion and improve the quality of life for all Cornwall residents and commuters."

Nearly all preliminary work has been completed and portions of the construction are now ready to be publicly tendered.

The new bridge will be integrated with recreational pathways along the waterfront. Bridge proponents say construction will create business opportunities, encourage redevelopment of properties along Brookdale Avenue, and allow Cornwall and area contractors, workers and businesses to benefit from participating in the project.

The bridge is expected to be open to the public by spring 2016.

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