New lanes to keep people and goods moving along the QEW



    NIAGARA FALLS, ON, Nov. 22 /CNW Telbec/ - Construction to help reduce
congestion and to keep people and goods moving along 5.2 kilometres of the
Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW) has been completed and will be fully open to traffic
on November 23, 2007, announced the Honourable Rob Nicholson, Minister of
Justice and Attorney General of Canada, and MP for Niagara Falls, on behalf of
the Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and
Communities, and the Honourable Jim Bradley, Ontario Minister of
Transportation and MPP for St. Catharines.
    "These improvements will help boost our safety and efficiency along this
busy trade and tourism route," said Minister Nicholson. "They reflect this
government's commitment to working with its provincial partners to improve
transportation infrastructure across the country."
    "Today we are announcing important improvements to the QEW, Niagara's
premier trade and tourism corridor," said Minister Bradley. "A better QEW
eases congestion, increases motorist safety and supports our prosperity."
    The QEW is integral to the economic prosperity of the Niagara Region and
the province with links to four border crossings to the United States, which
are the Queenston-Lewiston, Whirlpool, Rainbow and Peace bridges. Improving
and expanding the QEW to six lanes between Glendale Avenue and Mountain Road
cost $52.2 million. The federal government contributed $16 million from its
Border Infrastructure Fund and the provincial government $36.2 million through
its ReNew Ontario program.
    "This government is committed to expanding existing infrastructure
capacity, enhancing the safety of our National Highway System and the security
of our border crossings, as well as supporting the Canada-U.S. Smart Border
Action Plan," said Minister Cannon.

    The Government of Canada's funding was provided through the $600-billion
Border Infrastructure Fund, which provides financial assistance for
infrastructure projects that reduce border congestion, improve the flow of
goods and services and expand existing infrastructure.

    This year, the Province of Ontario invested more than $1.7 billion in
highway improvements through the ReNew Ontario infrastructure plan. These
investments are strengthening Ontario's economic advantage and creating
opportunities for the province's residents and businesses. For more
information on ReNew Ontario, please visit
www.pir.gov.on.ca/english/infrastructure/renew.htm.

    A backgrounder with more information on the QEW border infrastructure
projects is attached.

    
                                 Backgrounder
                                 ------------

              QUEEN ELIZABETH WAY BORDER INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECT
              -------------------------------------------------

    The Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW), the major trade corridor linking the
Greater Toronto Area to the Niagara region, is the principal transportation
link to four international crossings - the Queenston-Lewiston, Rainbow,
Whirlpool and Peace bridges - over the Niagara River to New York State.
    Traffic flow was frequently congested during peak periods. The QEW carries
an average of 74,000 vehicles per day from Glendale Avenue to Mountain Road,
of which approximately 15 per cent are commercial vehicles. Summer traffic is
significantly higher, with almost 100,000 vehicles per day travelling this
section of highway.
    In addition to widening the QEW by one lane each direction, other
improvements to enhance safety, and increase capacity and operations include:

    - the replacement of the Canadian National Rail structure;
    - the rehabilitation and resurfacing of the existing Mountain Road
      structure;
    - improvements to the Glendale Road interchange and Highway 405 ramps;
    - improvements to the median barrier, upgrading steel beam guide rail,
      and paving highway shoulders;
    - the installation of noise walls in one residential area; and
    - improvements to lighting and Advanced Traffic Management Systems.
    

    The Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario are also funding the
widening of the QEW from Seventh Street Louth to Garden City Skyway in St.
Catharines. This project is under construction and is scheduled to be complete
in 2011.

    More information about the status of the construction on these projects
can be found at www.mto.gov.on.ca.

    November 2007




For further information:

For further information: Karine White, Press Secretary, Office of the
Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, Ottawa, (613) 991-0700;
David Oved, Office of the Ontario Transportation Minister, Toronto  (416)
327-9134; Media Relations, Transport Canada, Ottawa, (613) 993-0055; Bob
Nichols, MTO Communications Branch, Toronto, (416) 327-1158; Transport Canada
is online at www.tc.gc.ca. Subscribe to news releases and speeches at
www.tc.gc.ca/listserv/ and keep up to date on the latest from Transport
Canada. The Ontario Ministry of Transportation is online at www.mto.gov.on.ca.
This news release may be made available in alternative formats for persons
with visual disabilities.


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