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Thu April 29, 2010
Canada pledges $550 M for Michigan's share of bridge project
By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network
LANSING, MI –
Canada has promised it will pay Michigan's share of the cost of building a new Detroit-to-Windsor international bridge if that will get the project moving.
Progress in the Legislature on building a new bridge has been very slow, and the potential cost to taxpayers has been a big argument. Governor Granholm says Canada's pledge of up to $550 million should end that fight.
The project is opposed by the privately owned Ambassador Bridge.
Governor Granholm says building a second span in Detroit - downriver from the Ambassador- will help set up Michigan for an economic recovery and create thousands of construction jobs. Canada is Michigan's biggest trading partner and Detroit is the nation's busiest border crossing.
"This will be a signature for Michigan," she says. "This bridge will be an iconic bridge."
Granholm says the debate over the new bridge in Detroit mirrors the controversy more than 50 years ago about building the Mackinac Bridge in connecting the upper and lower peninsulas in northern Michigan.