Ontario budget promises funding for South Niagara hospital

The Ontario budget included plans for a new hospital in south Niagara.

Niagara Falls Mayor Jim Diodati tells CKTB he is thrilled seeing it on paper that the government would be funding the project.

While a dollar amount wasn't mentioned, Diodati says the price tag for the 1.3 million square foot hospital facility is around one billion dollars.

He says today's announcement is great for south Niagara residents.

Diodati was invited to Queen's Park for today's budget lockup.

Niagara Falls MPP Wayne Gates tells CKTB he is hoping this will help get shovels in the ground soon.

Gates talked to the health minister following the budget release expressing that he would like to see construction on the site start as soon as possible, moving the project forward and creating jobs.

Niagara Health President Suzanne Johnston says they are grateful to the province for the healthcare investment and they look forward to receiving more details from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care about the funding.

It was back in 2014, Ontario announced a $26-million planning grant for a new south Niagara hospital proposed for the corner of Montrose Road and Biggar Road to replace hospitals in Niagara Falls, Fort Erie, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Welland and Port Colborne.

GO TRAIN

Gates is disappointed that the timeline to bring GO train to Niagara Falls is still in 2023.

He would like to see the process fast-tracked in time for the Summer Games in Niagara in 2021.

Diodati also saying it would be nice to have daily train service in time for the much anticipated games.