7:30 a.m., June 15)
adds voice to 'No bridge!' movement
By Fred Sherwin
Mayor Jim Watson has added his voice to the growing opposition
to a proposed interprovincial bridge in the east end.
on CFRA Thursday, Watson said a bridge will make a bad
situation worse on the Ottawa side by adding traffic to
a network that is already over capacity.
would you put an extra $500 million to $600 million into
a bridge when you just make matters worse for residents
in Orléans," said Watson. "The bridge will further
jam up traffic in the east end."
he told CTV news that the money that would be used to
build a bridge would be better spent on light rail.
the end of the day if we have an extra half billion plus
dollars I want to see those dollars go into transit to
encourage people to get into light rail to get into a
bus and to not simply get into a car and go from one province
to another and clog up the 417 even further in the east
statements echo those of Ottawa-Orléans MPP Phil McNeely
who told an anti-bridge rally on Tuesday that a bridge
at any of the locations currently being studied would
nullify the work being done to fix the Split and widen
the eastern portion Hwy. 417.
bridge, whether it's built at Kettle Island or in Orléans,
will add thousands of cars commuting from Gatineau and
more than 2,200 trucks a day to the Split and Hwy. 417,
which will completely overwhelm the extra lanes that are
being built," said McNeely. "The answer is clear,
rally brought together community groups opposed to a bridge
for the first time. Previously, the groups opposed to
a bridge in Corridor 5 took the position of that a bridge
should be built anywhere but Kettle Island which implied
that it should be built in either Corridor 6 or 7. They're
are now of the opinion that none of the options are appropriate.
Interprovincial Crossings Study has entered a critical
phase. The study team is currently gathering public input
to help in weighting the various factors and sub-factors
that will be used in evaluating the three location.
22-member evaluation commitee will meet in September to
review the factors and sub-factors using a pair-wise comparison
model and arrive at a preferred location. It will then
be up to the NCC and the provincial governments in Ontario
and Quebec to either support the recommended location
new inerprovincial bridge is supposed to serve a dual-purpose
-- to improve traffic flow across the Ottawa River and
to alleviate truck traffic downtown and especially along
King Edward Avenue.
argument against the proposed sites is that a new bridge
will benefit Gatineau residents to the detriment of Orléans
residents and it will only divert 40 per cent of the truck
traffic as the majority of trucks will still use the MacDonald-Cartier
Bridge and the Chaudiere Bridge.
are also questioning the truck traffic projections, noting
the report fails to take the completion of Hwy. 50 between
Gatineau and Montreal into consideration. The highway
is scheduled to be completed next year which will allow
Quebec trucks direct access between the two centres. At
this point is not known what, if any, impact the new highway
will have on interprovincial truck traffic.
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