FORT ERIE, Ont. — The Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority officially opened the new Canada Border Services Agency Peace Bridge Travellers Operations Building, the Peace Bridge Refugee Processing Unit and the Peace Bridge Newcomers Centre.
The authority also revealed the completion of the redevelopment of the Peace Bridge plaza, which aims to help reduce border congestion and expand infrastructure capacity.
“The redevelopment of the Peace Bridge plaza is an important step towards ensuring that this border crossing remains open, effective, efficient and secure,” said Rob Nicholson, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada.
The redevelopment includes improvements to both the Canadian and American plazas. The completed projects include: construction of the new Peace Bridge Travellers Operations Building to house the Canada Border Services Agency; construction of a new shared facility for the Peace Bridge Refugee Processing Unit and the Peace Bridge Newcomers Centre; construction of the Peace Bridge Authority Administration Building to house administration functions; relocation of the toll band from the American plaza to the Canadian plaza; relocation and increase in the number of primary inspection lanes on the Canadian plaza; construction of an elevated employee walkway; site work required by the plaza reconfiguration; improvements to general security on the plazas; construction of three additional primary truck inspection booths on the American plaza; and construction of a truck staging area on the Canadian plaza.
“The Peace Bridge Authority is pleased that we were able to partner with the Canadian government in completing a critically important project enhancing the functionality and efficiency of this international bridge,” said Anthony Annunziata, chair of the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority. “The travelling public and the business community will be well served by these improvements.”
The Peace Bridge improvement projects are valued at $50 million and were cost-shared by the Government of Canada and the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority.
The federal funding of up to $21 million came from the Border Infrastructure Fund, which provides funding for infrastructure enhancement projects that improve the capacity, efficiency and security at Canada’s key border crossings. The fund also supports the Canada US Smart Border Declaration Action Plan.
The Peace Bridge is Canada’s second busiest border crossing, handling 5.5 million cars and 1.3 million trucks in 2006.
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