THUNDER BAY – More money for Northwestern Ontario highways is coming. “Investments through our government’s Northern Highways Program ensure that transportation infrastructure across Northern Ontario is expanded and improved. These latest investments in Highways 17 and 595 will provide greater safety and improved driving conditions for travellers in Northwestern Ontario,” states Minister Michael Gravelle, Minister of Northern Development and Mines.
Through the Northern Highways Program, Ontario will put a total of $18.5 million in two projects:
- Two bridges on Pays Plat River and Pays Plat Creek on Highway 17 at the community of Pays Plat First Nation about 10 kilometres northwest of Rossport
- Three culverts on the Cedar and Sitch Creeks on Highway 595 in the Township of Gillies, southwest of the City of Thunder Bay.
Work on both projects will begin this spring and is expected to be completed in 2017.
These projects are part of the largest infrastructure investment in Ontario’s history — about $160 billion over 12 years, which is supporting 110,000 jobs every year across the province, with projects such as roads, bridges, transit systems, schools and hospitals. In 2015, the province announced support for more than 325 projects that will keep people and goods moving, connect communities and improve quality of life.
Improving highway infrastructure is part of the government’s economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history and investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.
- In 2015-16 Ontario is investing $560-million in highway infrastructure projects across the North through the Northern Highways Program.
- Facca Incorporated has been awarded the $14.2-million Highway 17 contract.
- LH North Ltd. and LH Crane and Rigging Ltd. have been awarded the $4.3-million Highway 595 contract.
- Investing in roads, highways and bridges is part of the Ontario government’s Growth Plan for Northern Ontario.
“Our government is investing in the critical transportation infrastructure that families and businesses in Northern Ontario rely on daily. Expanding and improving our northern highway network is necessary for helping our economy grow and creating jobs in the North, and is proof that Premier Kathleen Wynne and our government are focused on building Ontario up,” said Minister of Transportation Steven Del Duca.
“On behalf of the residents of the Township of Gillies, I would like to acknowledge the commitment being made by our provincial government to the sustainability of the vital infrastructure that we all depend on. Projects like these will not only create much-needed employment, but will help ensure a safe and reliable highway system well into the future,” shared Rick Kieri, the Reeve of the Township of Gillies.