McGuinty Government Keeping Highway Infrastructure In Top Shape



    Southern Highways Program Helping To Build Ontario's Sustainable Future

    OTTAWA, Aug. 10 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government is expanding and renewing
highway infrastructure across Southern Ontario, Transportation Minister Donna
Cansfield announced today as she officially launched the second year of the
five-year Southern Highways Program (SHP).
    "Our highways are the lifelines that connect us to communities across
Ontario," said Cansfield. "The McGuinty government's plan will improve safety
and efficiency and keep our highways, roads and bridges in excellent
condition."
    Cansfield made the announcement in Ottawa joined by Ottawa-Orléans MPP
Phil McNeely along Highway 417, where a number of SHP projects will take place
over the next five years.
    The McGuinty government is investing $3.4 billion over five years through
the SHP to renew and expand highway infrastructure across Southern Ontario.
The 2007 edition of the SHP is available on the Ministry of Transportation's
website at www.mto.gov.on.ca.

    
    Key construction projects added to the SHP this year include:

    -   Widening Highway 10 from two to four lanes from Caledon Village to
        Highway 9 to improve road safety and ease traffic congestion
    -   Building the Fairgrounds Road and Batteaux River Bridges, Phase 2 of
        the new alignment of Highway 26 between Wasaga Beach and Collingwood
        to improve road safety
    -   Extending Highway 404 from Green Lane to Ravenshoe Road in York
        Region to improve traffic flow and
    -   Making Highway 417 safer in Ottawa by improving access to Ottawa Road
        174.
    

    "Making necessary improvements, like addressing the congestion and safety
issues around the 417 split in Ottawa, will benefit residents, commuters and
businesses in the City of Ottawa and surrounding municipalities," added
Ottawa-Orléans MPP Phil McNeely. "The multi-year Southern Highways Program
addresses infrastructure needs today for the benefit of our citizens
tomorrow."
    "This investment in Southern Ontario's roads and bridges generates
thousands of jobs in the construction industry," noted Rob Bradford, executive
director of the Ontario Road Builder's Association. "And with all the roadwork
underway, I'd like to remind drivers to please be patient, drive safely and
reduce your speed when driving through a construction zone."
    The McGuinty government is moving Ontario forward. Since 2003, the
government has committed $6.3 billion in highways, roads and bridges and
invested $4.9 billion in public transit, including over $1.8 billion in GO
Transit. Investing in highways and public transit keeps Ontario's economy
strong.
    For up-to-date road condition information on major highways in the area,
visit www.roadinfo.mto.gov.on.ca or call the ministry's road information line
at (416) 235-4686, or toll-free at 1-800-268-4686.

    
    Disponible en français

                              www.mto.gov.on.ca


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

                   BUILDING BETTER HIGHWAYS FOR ONTARIANS

    The multi-year Southern Highways Program (SHP) will reduce congestion,
improve pavement and bridge conditions and help maintain Ontario's excellent
road safety record by providing smoother and safer driving conditions. It will
also ensure the $1.2 trillion worth of goods carried on Ontario highways every
year get to market on time.

    The program includes:
    -   130 kilometres of new highway
    -   Building or replacing 64 new bridges
    -   Repairing 1,600 kilometres of highway and
    -   Repairing 200 bridges.

    Construction highlights under the five-year plan include:

    2007 Projects

    -   Widening Highway 7, from two to four lanes from Highway 417 to west
        of Jinkinson Road in Kanata, to improve safety and traffic flow
    -   Widening Highway 406 from two to four lanes, from Beaverdams Road to
        Port Robinson Road in Welland, to improve traffic flow and road
        safety
    -   Widening Highway 401 from four to six lanes between Woodstock and
        Cambridge (Phases 1 and 2 of 3)
    -   Repairing Highway 401 to improve road safety and traffic flow. Work
        is proceeding from Avenue Road to Leslie Street eastbound collector
        lanes and at Jane Street to Kipling Avenue eastbound collector and
        westbound express lanes in Toronto.
    -   Repairing seven bridges on Highway 427 and repaving nearly seven
        kilometers of southbound express lanes for improved safety and
        driving conditions.

    New Projects Starting in 2008

    -   Adding new High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes in both directions on
        Highway 400 from Major Mackenzie Drive to King Road in York Region to
        improve traffic flow and encourage carpooling
    -   Widening Highway 401 from Highway 410 to Hurontario Street and
        constructing a new interchange at Hurontario Street in Mississauga to
        ease congestion
    -   Adding two lanes on Highway 10 through the village of Caledon to
        improve the flow of traffic. At least four lanes will be open to
        traffic all the way to Orangeville by fall 2008.
    -   Completing the widening of Highway 401 from four to six lanes between
        Woodstock and Cambridge (Phase 3 of 3).

    New Projects Starting in 2009

    -   Adding new HOV lanes on Highway 427 from Highway 409 to Highway 407
        in Toronto to ease traffic congestion and encourage carpooling.

    Contact:
    Bob Nichols
    Ministry of Transportation
    416-327-1158

    Disponible en français

                              www.mto.gov.on.ca
    





For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: Jamie Rilett, Minister's
Office, (416) 327-9134; Bob Nichols, Communications Branch, (416) 327-1158

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