Plan will Provide Safer Rides, Stronger Economic Growth From South to North: Premier Selinger
A five-year, $225-million highway upgrade plan that includes complete asphalt paving to new wider national highway standards, bridge replacements, intersection improvements, curve realignments, and design work for new passing lanes will make PTH 6 safer and faster for trade between Winnipeg and Thompson and increase tourism opportunities in the Interlake, Premier Greg Selinger and Infrastructure and Transportation Minister Steve Ashton announced today. They also announced plans to surface all of PR 373 and PR 374, which will be future access points to the east side road network.
“We are rebuilding PTH 75, our main trade route to the United States, Winnipeg’s Perimeter Highway, PTH 10 in Westman and we have opened CentrePort Canada Way, all to strengthen important trade routes for Manitoba business,” said Premier Selinger. “Upgrading PTH 6 to national highway standards is the next step to improve our strategic trade routes for people and goods from Winnipeg through the Interlake and to the north.”
The premier said the five-year plan for strategic northern roads is expected to cost nearly $225 million and create the equivalent of one year of employment for more than 2,500 people.
“Our government is committed to investing in our roads, bridges and other infrastructure throughout Manitoba to improve the overall safety of travellers while creating jobs,” said Minister Ashton. “These projects are part of a five-year plan for building Manitoba’s core infrastructure including roads and bridges, flood protection and municipal infrastructure like sewer and water systems that would not have been possible without the new revenue from the one-cent-on-the-dollar sales tax increase.”
The minister said planned upgrades to the southern section of PTH 6 are expected to total
$125 million and include:
* paving 28.4 kilometres of asphalt from Grosse Isle (PR 322) to PR 248 including curve realignment of the road in vicinity of Woodlands;
* improving intersections in the vicinity of Lake Francis;
* improving intersections at the Ashern Auction Mart Road;
* paving 22.7 km of asphalt from PR 248 to PR 415 (St. Laurent);
* paving 30.2 km of asphalt from PR 419 to north junction PTH 68;
* paving 16 km of asphalt from north junction of PTH 68 to Camper Drain;
* paving 16.1 km of asphalt from Camper Drain to north junction of PR 325;
* paving 11 km of asphalt from north junction of PR 325 to 1.6 km south of PR 237;
* paving 19.5 km of asphalt from 1.6 km south of PR 237 to PR 239; and
* building a new structure at Homebrook Drain (St. Martin Junction).
“Our members have told us that safety is their biggest concern on Hwy 6 and I am pleased the Manitoba government is listening and taking actions,” said Mike Mager, president and CEO, Canadian Automobile Association of Manitoba. “The addition of passing lanes and the reduction of curves from Winnipeg to Thompson will make the ride north a lot safer and smoother for Manitoba drivers.”
The minister also said planned upgrades to the northern section of PTH 6 are expected to total
$63 million and include:
* paving 31 km of asphalt from Devils Lake to 31 km north of Devils Lake;
* paving 10.5 km of asphalt from 49 km north of Devils Lake to 59.5 km north of Devils Lake;
* paving 28.4 km of asphalt from the Wabowden access to Sasagiu Rapids;
* paving 25 km of asphalt from Sasagiu Rapids to 25 km north of Sasagiu Rapids;
* providing 25 km of grade, base material and asphalt pavement from 25 km north of Sasagiu Rapids to PR 375;
* constructing a new bridge at Two Rivers Diversion; and
* constructing a new bridge at North Morrison Creek.
Premier Selinger said the complete grading and surfacing of provincial roads 373 and 374 over the next five years are expected to cost $37.5-million.
“In addition to improving trade and travel for Cross Lake and Norway House families and businesses, upgrading PR 373 and PR 374 will eventually connect to the east side road network, an unprecedented investment that is creating jobs and training opportunities for Manitobans that until now have only had winter roads,” he said. “These upgrades are an important step toward connecting east side communities to the rest of the province, bringing down the cost of living and improving access to services for east side families.”
The northern highway investments announced today are in addition to recently announced upgrades to roads and bridges in the Flin Flon region that include:
* phasing in improvements over several years to a 21-km stretch of PTH 10 between Bakers Narrows and Flin Flon, starting in the 2014 construction season;
* grading and paving a 16-km stretch of PTH 39 from six km west of PR 596 to 10 km east of PR 596;
* replacing a bridge at Big Island Lake along PTH 10 south of Flin Flon;
* resurfacing over 27 km of PTH 10 from Cranberry Portage to Bakers Narrows; and
* preserving pavement with a sealcoat treatment on a 35-km section of PTH 391 from Suwanee River to the Turnbull Lake access.
Motorists are reminded to slow down and use caution approaching and in construction zones, for their own safety and the safety of workers. The latest information on lane closures and road conditions is available anytime at 511 (toll-free), at www.mb511.ca or by following the Twitter account at www.twitter.com/MBGovRoads.
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NOTE: A map showing the PTH 6 and Northern Trade Route projects can be found as an attached backgrounder to the release at http://news.gov.mb.ca/news/index.html?archive=2013-12-01&item=19836.