Statement by Minister Lebel - new bridge for the St. Lawrence

OTTAWA, Nov. 22, 2013 /CNW/ - Last week, I held a press conference to provide an update on the condition of the Champlain Bridge and progress on the construction of the new bridge.

I mentioned that the Champlain Bridge was subject to ongoing monitoring, that experts were on site to ensure it is operating properly and that the Government of Canada was making no compromises with the safety of citizens. This is why one lane leading to the South Shore was closed last week after a crack was detected on one of the bridge's beams.

Following new inspections and studies, The Jacques Cartier and Champlain Bridges Inc. has determined that the installation of a supporting girder would be the most appropriate way to address the crack. It is important to emphasize that the safety of the bridge has not been compromised. This additional measure aims to add an extra level of safety for users of the Champlain Bridge. All necessary steps will be taken to ensure safety.

We are redoubling our efforts to bring the new bridge into service quickly. Technical work is continuing, as are discussions with the Government of Quebec and the cities of Montreal, Longueuil and Brossard. In fact, this morning, I have spoken to the mayors of Montreal, Longueuil and Brossard and with Minister Gaudreault.

Over the next few weeks, I will announce a new timeline for the project. We are speeding up the work so that the new bridge can go into service before 2021. I am calling for renewed cooperation with all our partners so as to make rapid progress with the activities and discussions that must take place before construction can start.

Replacement of the Champlain Bridge is a priority for our government. We remain committed to achieve this as soon as possible.


This statement may be made available in alternative formats for persons living with visual disabilities.


SOURCE: Transport Canada

For further information:

Marie-Josée Paquette
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Denis Lebel,
Minister of Infrastructure, Communities and
Intergovernmental Affairs, and Minister of the
Economic Development Agency of Canada for the
Regions of Quebec, Ottawa


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