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Plenty of support for Hanwell ramp

FREDERICTON, N.B. -- Fredericton MLAs are supporting Hanwell Road residents in their efforts to have a new intercha...

FREDERICTON, N.B. — Fredericton MLAs are supporting Hanwell Road residents in their efforts to have a new interchange with the four-lane Trans-Canada Highway built at Hanwell Road.

Peter Forbes, chairman of the eight-member greater Fredericton Progressive Conservative caucus, says that the Fredericton MLAs are supporting York Tory member Don Kinney’s bid to persuade the Department of Transportation to build a full interchange.

“It’s a fact that Fredericton really got only one exit when the new highway was built. We need another exit generally,” Forbes says.

Stories of drivers chronically missing the turnoff from the four-lane Trans-Canada Highway into the city are growing explains Forbes.

“People are ending up in Jemseg or Mazerolle Settlement wondering where Fredericton went,” he says. “It’s why I would have thought that the city would have supported this. I understand they have some reservations.”

Fredericton Mayor Les Hull and the city’s planning and priorities chairman, Walter Brown, say the province will just cause more traffic and development problems for the city and for itself if it builds the Hanwell Road ramps.

The city leaders contend they can’t in good conscience support the project when they must represent more pressing city taxpayer needs.

Brown says the construction of on- and off-ramps at Hanwell Road will cause heavy truck traffic when the street is already inadequate and needs to be expanded to three lanes.

“Our caucus has no reservations. It would be good for the city, the Hanwell area and give (the area) another interchange,” Forbes says. “Fredericton is not quite as keen on this as I would have hoped.”

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