Sierra Club Opposes Windsor - Detroit Bridge

January 19, 2011

WINDSOR-DETROIT BRIDGE – EXPENSIVE, ENVIRONMENTALLY DESTRUCTIVE, UNNEEDED AND WITHOUT A U.S. PARTNER

Sierra Club Ontario will hold a 10 AM January 26th news conference at the Queen’s Park Media Studio to release an Econometric Research Limited study that concludes that there is no need for a new Windsor-Detroit bridge. Econometric Research determined that projections for increased cross-border traffic are erroneous, defy common sense and are in deep denial of the fact that cross-border traffic has been down since 1999, two years before 9/11. Dr. Atif Kubursi, Professor of Economics, McMaster University and President of Econometric Research will present the document at the Jan. 26 conference.

The Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) project calls for the construction of a new bridge to facilitate car and truck cross-border traffic. Sierra Club Canada and U.S. oppose DRIC as unneeded and environmentally destructive. DRIC has been referred to as a solution in search of a problem. As well, the State of Michigan has failed to commit to DRIC. The cost of the entire project is estimated to be in excess of $5 billion. $1.6 billion has been committed by the Government of Ontario to construct the Windsor-Essex Parkway (WEP) which is intended to be the Ontario access point for DRIC. WEP is scheduled for construction in 2011 and its planned route will impact upon the Ojibway Complex, Canada’s largest remaining tall grass prairie ecosystem, and damage more than eight species at risk including the endangered Eastern Foxsnake. Sierra Club Ontario Director Dan McDermott today said that, “With no American commitment to build the DRIC bridge, Ontario taxpayers are being asked to pay over a billion dollars to build a road to nowhere”.

Mr. McDermott will speak for Sierra Club at the Queen’s Park news conference. Also speaking will be Dr. Robert Murphy, a University of Toronto and Royal Ontario Museum affiliated herpetologist. Dr. Murphy will address the impact that the Windsor Essex Parkway project will have on endangered and threatened snake species.

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For additional information contact: Dan McDermott, 647 345-7665, (cell) 416-873-3852, dmcd@sierraclub.ca

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