A Quick Trip To Windsor For Canada's Prime Minister

It was a whirlwind day in Windsor for Canada's  Prime Minister.

The visit by Justin Trudeau started Thursday evening when he spoke at a sold-out Liberal fundraising event at the Art Gallery of Windsor where he discussed investments, challenges and opportunities ahead of the 2019 federal election. 

Trudeau said he expects the opposition parties to run campaigns of fear and division, but also promised to be back in Windsor a year from now. 

Early Friday morning, the PM and several other dignitaries gathered for the official groundbreaking of the Gordie Howe International Bridge.

Trudeau said the six-lane, 2.5-kilometre cable-stayed bridge spanning the Detroit River, which is touted as the longest cable-stayed bridge in North America, will provide a critical conduit for commerce between the two countries, an issue he said has taken on increased relevance since the successful resolution of contentious free trade negotiations earlier in the week.

The $5.7-billion project that is anticipated to create 2,500 direct, on-site jobs.

The bridge is expected to be in service by the end of 2024, although Trudeau said Friday that both governments hope to fast track construction.

After the announcement, Trudeau moved on to a meeting with local labour leaders for a closed door session to discuss the local impact and concerns regarding the new USMCA and TPP trade deals.

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The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, speaking to employees during a tour of the FCA Windsor Assembly Plant - home of the Chrysler Pacifica, Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and Dodge Grand Caravan, October 5, 2018. (Photo courtesy of FCA Canada)

Trudeau also attended a celebration for the bridge groundbreaking over the noon hour, where close to 1,000 residents attended to get a chance to meet the Prime Minister. 

A short time later, standing amongst a group of several hundred of the workers on break at the FCA Windsor Assembly Plant, Trudeau touted the new deal, saying that workers and their families always need to be at the centre of the agreement.

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The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada meeting families and handing out Thanksgiving turkeys at the Unemployed Help Centre in Windsor, October 5, 2018. (Photo by Selina McCallum / AM800 News)

Trudeau ended his visit by stopping at the Unemployed Help Centre, where he handed out Thanksgiving turkeys to residents in need.