EDMUNDSTON, N.B. — The first of three newly twinned portions of the Trans-Canada Highway in the province was opened to traffic Tuesday.
The 7.2-kilometre stretch runs through the Saint-Jacques sector of Edmundston to a spot about 1.5 kilometres from the Quebec border.
"We want New Brunswick to be a magnet for investment and a gateway for trade," Premier Bernard Lord said at the highway’s official opening. "Building strategic infrastructure such as the Trans-Canada Highway is a top priority of our government."
A total of 65 kilometres of four-lane road is scheduled to open this fall under a joint federal-provincial agreement.
A 33-kilometre stretch between Woodstock and Pokiok is expected to open for traffic next month, as is a 25-kilometre portion from Saint-Leonard to Grand Falls.
Madawaska-Restigouche MP Jeannot Castonguay said the work was important as this stretch of highway is used as a major commercial and tourist route.
“Completing the four lanes of this section of highway is good news for the people of New Brunswick, visitors to the province and the economy of the region and the provinces," said Castonguay.
In August 2002, the federal and provincial governments announced they would split the $400 million cost of twinning the remaining 130 kilometres of the Trans-Canada Highway. The remainder of the work is to be completed over the next three years, said Transportation Minister Paul Robichaud.
“So in 2007, the four-lane highway from the Quebec border to the Nova Scotia border will be complete,” Robichaud said.
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