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OTA: Study progress a positive step

TORONTO, Ont. -- Ontario Trucking Association president David Bradley welcomed the announcement by the Detroit Rive...

TORONTO, Ont. — Ontario Trucking Association president David Bradley welcomed the announcement by the Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) study team, of a recommended access route leading to new bridge crossing from Windsor to Detroit.

The recommendation is for the creation of a below grade parkway from Howard Avenue to E.C. Row Expressway with a number of short tunnels which will facilitate the creation of trails for pedestrians, cyclists and wildlife. This would be the main link to the new bridge whose exact location is still to be determined later this fall.

Bradley viewed the announcement as a positive step, which proves the DRIC process is working.

“While this is just one small step forward in a long and complex process, today’s announcement does give me some hope that at the end of the day the DRIC process will find a solution to the Windsor-Detroit border crossing problem that addresses the concerns of the local community as well as meeting the needs of the manufacturers and exporters on both sides of the border and the trucks that carry their goods,” he commented.

“The border crossing between Windsor and Detroit is the vital economic link between southern Ontario and Michigan and the broader United States. The Windsor-Detroit Corridor accounts for 28% of Canada-US merchandise trade, Bradley added. “In order to ensure that this critical economic artery continues to support economic prosperity on both sides of the river, we need to build a second crossing that will eliminate the need for trucks to travel on city streets, that will provide redundancy for the existing crossings in case of an emergency, that will provide added capacity to support future economic growth, and that will reduce environmental impacts by eliminating the long queues at the border which cause trucks to burn more fuel idling, starting and stopping.”

Bradley noted that in a best-case scenario, the new crossing would not be ready until 2013. He anticipates however, with a strong continued vision, commitment and political will on both sides of the border, the DRIC will produce a final recommendation for the entire project by the end of 2007.

“While today’s announcement about the access route is an important step forward, it is vital that the DRIC study team and politicians on both sides of the border get on with the job of deciding on where to locate the bridge and plaza, and to begin construction as soon as possible, concluded Bradley.

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