Dec. 10, 2008
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The province is building on its capital budget with another record investment in its highways and bridges. Transportation Minister Denis Landry today released a capital budget of almost $386 million.
"It is an exciting time for industry, for people and communities," said Landry. "Improving our transportation network is a reflection of this government's commitment to achieve self-sufficiency. We are continuing an aggressive agenda to modernize New Brunswick's transportation infrastructure to support and accelerate our economic growth and competitiveness."
Landry said that $187 million will be invested in projects identified through the asset management system. This approach helps identify the right treatment at the right time to make improvements to roads, at the lowest cost to taxpayers.
"This simple, cost-effective New Brunswick-built solution is helping us manage New Brunswick's highway and bridge assets, and provides the department with information on potential projects," said Landry.
Landry confirmed that government will complete the twinning of Route 1 and pursue the ongoing rehabilitation, operation and maintenance between the U.S. border at St. Stephen and the intersection with Route 2 River Glade through a public-private partnership.
"Completing the twinning of Route 1 was part of our Charter for Change," Landry said. "Using a private-sector partner is a cost-effective way to complete the highway by 2014. New Brunswick highway construction firms have proven that they can take a leadership role in undertaking and operating these major projects."
Major projects to be funded through federal-provincial cost-shared agreements include:
More than $50 million will be spent on various bridge construction and rehabilitation projects, including: Princess Margaret Bridge in Fredericton ($12 million); Cocagne River Bridge ($4.5 million); Richibucto Bridge #1 ($3.5 million); and the Hugh John Flemming Bridge in Hartland ($1.5 million).
The capital budget also provides $20.4 million to allow for capital improvements on routes 11 and 17.
Landry said that $7 million will be invested in a bridge, paving and grading at the Cooks Brook Route #2 CNR overpass, and Route 134 in Moncton.
More than 34 kilometres of linear wildlife fencing will be installed on Route 2 at Saint- Basile to the Quisibis River. Landry said that government is surpassing its commitment of 300 kilometres of fencing outlined in the Charter for Change to reduce the number of accidents between motorists and animals.
"The substantial funding dedicated to these projects demonstrates our commitment to invest in infrastructure that will not only help New Brunswickers be safer, but will generate efficiencies, economic benefits and strengthen our communities," Landry said
The 2009-10 capital budget brings government's investment to improve and maintain New Brunswick's transportation infrastructure to $908 million since 2006.
A complete list of new highway construction projects may be found at www.gnb.ca/transportation.
MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew Holland, communications, Department of Transportation, 506-453-5634.