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Canada offers to pay Mich. share of bridge

April 29, 2010 at 6:57 PM

LANSING, Mich., April 29 (UPI) -- Canada has offered to cover Michigan's share of a new bridge over the Detroit River to Ontario, Gov. Jennifer Granholm announced Thursday.

Granholm, testifying at a state House of Representatives hearing in Lansing, said Michigan would not have to put up any money for the proposed Detroit River International Crossing, Canwest News Service reported. She received a letter from Transportation Minister John Baird offering $550 million U.S.

The rest of the funding would come from the U.S. government and other sources. The Canadian money would be used to connect the bridge to Interstate 75 and to build a plaza at the U.S. end.

The transportation committee is considering the project.

Dan Stamper, president of the Detroit International Bridge Co., which owns the existing crossing, the Ambassador Bridge, said a new bridge is not necessary because auto traffic between Michigan and Ontario is declining, the Detroit Free Press reported. He also argued that most of the jobs created by the bridge would be in Canada and that the crossing, once completed, would draw away about 75 percent of the traffic on the Ambassador Bridge.

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