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Significant investments in road infrastructure

ST. JOHN'S, Nfld. -- The 2003 Budget demonstrates government's commitment to improving transportation infrastructur...

ST. JOHN’S, Nfld. — The 2003 Budget demonstrates government’s commitment to improving transportation infrastructure by making significant investments in the province’s highways.

Works, Services and Transportation Minister, Jim Walsh, says the total provincial-federal capital investment in road work planned for 2003-04 is approximately $74.3 million.

“This government recognizes the fact that investments in our infrastructure help the provincial economy, especially in rural Newfoundland and Labrador where most of the road work will be carried out,” says Walsh. “This spending will benefit the construction industry, particularly the road builders, as well as spin-off industries, and the upgrades will help facilitate more efficient movement of people and goods in those areas.”

Walsh says they have allocated $26.2 million for the Trans Labrador Highway, of which $17 million has been earmarked to begin construction of the highway between Cartwright and Happy Valley-Goose Bay. Funding has also been set aside to complete work on phase two of the Trans Labrador Highway.

“This past fall we opened the final section of phase two to Cartwright. The opening marked the first time in history there has been a road link from Red Bay to Cartwright. Although the road is open, we still have to do some additional work, in the amount of about $4.65 million,” Walsh says.

He says the department will also spend approximately $4.5 million to complete the road to Pinsent’s Arm and $500,000 to upgrade local roads in Cartwright, and will spend approximately $4.7 million on summer and winter maintenance on the Trans Labrador Highway.

“$74 million is a substantial amount of money and I am thrilled we have received this funding for road construction,” says Walsh. “I am excited about the amount of road work planned for this year and I look forward to making some much needed improvements to our transportation infrastructure.”

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