Community Benefits Included In Gordie Howe Bridge Project

Included in the details of the financial cost of the Gordie Howe International Bridge is a component for community benefits.

It was part of the bidding process for the proponents to build the project for the Windsor Detroit Bridge Authority.

Bridging North America has included funding and programs to meet those community needs.

Tom Middlebrook is with BNA and says the plan covers several areas.

"We have a number of initiative in the plan, but establishing a community partnerships, working with the community review safety and making connections, focusing our efforts to lessen the impact of construction operations promoting economic benefits and enhancing the aesthetics and landscaping."

WDBA VP Communication Heather Grondin says the community will share in $20-million for infrastructure.

"Lessening the effects and impacts of construction and operation issues is important. As well putting a focus on community safety and connectivity is important as well as providing for additional aesthetics and landscaping opportunities."

Grondin says there will be public art at the Port of Entry as well.

"There'll be aesthetic building facades and a standalone First Nations piece which includes the mentoring of a First Nation youth.  The bridge itself will include dramatic lighting at night which in itself is considered to be public art."

In announcing the financial details of the project, there's a pledge that $250-million of the spending from the project will go to workers and suppliers within 100 kilometres of the bridge.

The Windsor Essex Community Benefits Coalition is pleased with the size and scope of the benefits that have been announced.