The Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) is supporting a new study that recommends the creation of a new access route leading to a proposed bridge crossing from Windsor, Ontario, Canada, to Detroit MI.
OTA pointed out that the border crossing between Windsor and Detroit is the vital economic link between southern Ontario and Michigan and the broader United States. The Windsor-Detroit Corridor accounts for 28 percent of Canada-US merchandise trade.
“In order to ensure that this critical economic artery continues to support economic prosperity on both sides of the river, we need to build a second crossing that will eliminate the need for trucks to travel on city streets, that will provide redundancy for the existing crossings in case of an emergency, that will provide added capacity to support future economic growth, and that will reduce environmental impacts by eliminating the long queues at the border which cause trucks to burn more fuel idling, starting, and stopping,” David Bradley, OTA president, stated in a press release posted on the association's Web site.
The Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) announced the recommendation August 14 to create a below-grade parkway from Howard Avenue to E C Row Expressway with a number of short tunnels to facilitate the creation of trails for pedestrians, cyclists, and wildlife. The parkway would be the main link to the new bridge, the exact location to be determined later this year, according to the OTA information at ontruck.org.
“While this is just one small step forward in a long and complex process, today’s announcement does give me some hope that at the end of the day the DRIC process will find a solution to the Windsor-Detroit border crossing problem that addresses the concerns of the local community, as well as meeting the needs of the manufacturers and exporters on both sides of the border and the trucks that carry their goods,” said Bradley said, adding, “While today’s announcement about the access route is an important step forward, it is vital that the DRIC study team and politicians on both sides of the border get on with the job of deciding on where to locate the bridge and plaza, and to begin construction as soon as possible. The best case is that a new crossing won’t be ready until 2013, but to make that target we will need continued vision, commitment, and political will on both sides of the border."