OPERATIONAL LAUNCH: New bridge to open Friday

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Hendrik Saaltink, general manager of the Seaway International Bridge Corporation stands on the new low-level structure that opens Friday, while the old bridge stands in the background.

CORNWALL, Ontario - The new low-level bridge in Cornwall will open Friday, the Federal Bridge Corporation (FBC) said.

"The construction of the new low-level North Channel Bridge, The Seaway International Bridge Corporation (SIBC) Toll Plaza and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) Plaza in Cornwall are now completed and will be open to bridge users on Friday...at 7 a.m.," the FBC said in a release.

Plans are for a smooth transition on opening day, with a simultaneous closure of the high-level structure.

"The Seaway International Bridge is a key economic link between Canada and the United States; the new North Channel Bridge will improve our community and contribute to the future economic growth of our region," said Deborah Tropea, vice-chair of the bridge corporation.

Andre Girard, spokesperson for the Federal Bridge Corporation, said despite the focus placed on the new bridge, there is no "official" launch planned this week.

"If there is anything it will be next summer," he said. "It is very much an operational launch."

The toll to cross the bridge will remain $3.25.

Security measures will be implemented in order to prevent any possible access to the high-level bridge until demolition begins, the bridge corporation said.

"The new bridge incorporates advanced technology in its design and construction," said bridge corporation president Micheline Dubé. "It is a tremendous project for the (bridge corporation) team to provide Cornwall, Akwesasne and surrounding communities."

The bridge corporation said it has been fortunate to work collaboratively with various partners, such SIBC, CBSA and Transport Canada to realize this project. It also strongly benefited from the direct involvement of the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne, the City of Cornwall and highly skilled contractors and workers.

The high-level bridge will be dismantled and as such Brookdale Avenue within the City of Cornwall will be realigned. As originally announced, the project completion is planned late 2016.

In 2010, the federal government announced the construction of the new North Channel Bridge through a $74.8M project planned in four phases. The historic high-level bridge, a 1962 structure, has reached the end of its useful life. With the first two phases now completed, the new crossing, toll plaza and temporary interim CBSA plaza are now ready for use.

Organizations: Federal Bridge Corporation

Geographic location: CORNWALL, Ontario

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Recent comments

  • Helene Loper
    January 24, 2014 - 20:20

    Is this new bridge paved or is it a metal grated bridge? I ride a motorcycle and hate riding on grated metal. I have always crossed using the Cornwall bridge because I felt safer and it is much less scary to ride on when paved.

    • Ottawa_Biker
      February 05, 2014 - 01:51

      From my understanding it will be paved.

  • Judy
    January 24, 2014 - 09:00

    I for one will be glad not to sit on that old bridge last time I when across I could not believe we were still aloud to cross on it

  • Sharon Burnette
    January 22, 2014 - 18:52

    Cant wait to go across on new bridge atleast will be alot safer

  • Sharon Burnette
    January 22, 2014 - 18:51

    Cant wait to go across on new bridge atleast will be alot safer

  • Mike
    January 22, 2014 - 17:09

    That is very nice we have a new bridge but one thing I don't understand why we have to pay to go across the new bridge again they are making a lot of money to pay $3.25 in $3.25 to come back I know what they say it's for the maintenance and everything else but is bridge the new one it's a lot smaller so and it's brand-new so it doesn't need repair so I guess they need the money because they're used to have the money in it we want more and more and more that's what it is and like today take it from the poor and give it to the rich always like that from my opinion or all bunch of crooks

    • joe
      January 24, 2014 - 07:23

      Longest run-on sentence ever. It does not surprise me someone like you is complaining about the tiny fee to travel across to the United States. You are Probably sitting on your computer in your PJ's drinking Tim Hortons collecting welfare.

    • Cynthia Boyer
      January 26, 2014 - 10:50

      Joe...you may have better diction and grammar..but I can assure you that your comment does not elevate anyone. And Mike...you certainly have a point..that has become almost pointless to make. The government does not care about those who cannot afford "small fees".