New Champlain bridge to be named...the Samuel-de-Champlain Bridge

Wednesday was a day of milestones for the new Champlain Bridge project, as the north and south structures came together in the middle — and the bridge's new name was unveiled.

"Welcome to the Samuel-de-Champlain Bridge," declared Francois-Philippe Champagne, federal minister responsible for infrastructure and communities. 

He along with dignitaries from the City of Montreal and Brossard announced the slightly modified name atop the structure during a tour, Wednesday morning.

"This morning is about celebrating our heroes," he said. "The men and women who have built this bridge. Good days, bad days, 24 hours per day, 7 days per week."

Workers gathered and cheered enthusiastically as the federal minister thanked each crew and awarded plaques to select individuals.

Despite the fact that the bridge was scheduled to be open to vehicle traffic on Dec. 21st, the mood was still celebratory.

"The bridge is substantially completed, "Champagne said. "You can cross the bridge walking. There is still a bit more work to do. The guys will do it when they come back from vacation after Christmas."

In October, Champagne announced the project would be delivered no later than June 30, 2019. He reiterated that promise on Wednesday.