NDP and Liberals agree; E.C. Row uploading possible if elected

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Yet another vote of confidence for Mayor Drew Dilkens' idea of having the E.C. Row Expressway uploaded to provincial jurisdiction.

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is echoing similar sentiments to what Liberal Leader Stephen Del Duca said when it comes to the expensive responsibility that was dropped on Windsor taxpayers' laps in 1997. According to Dilkens and others in the community, the expressway that spans 15.4 kilometres from Ojibway Parkway in the west to Banwell Road in the east serves much more than just Windsor, so the burden should be shared.

Horwath tells AM800 News, she's in agreement that the cost shouldn't be the city's responsibility.

"I'm really interested to hear that Mayor Dilkens is talking about this. We were just talking about this issue when I was in Northern Ontario the other day, because municipalities don't have the capacity to maintain those provincial highways."

She plans to go beyond just possibly uploading E.C. Row.

"It's something absolutely that we would look at, as well as helping with the operating costs of transit, so not just roadways, but transit as well," she said. "We're going to upload 50% of the cost of operating transit systems."

Horwath adds, she knows firsthand the strain maintaining the roadway could be having on Windsor.

"Well, you know, I used to be a city councillor, and in fact I was on City Council when the download happened in Hamilton, so I do understand exactly the stress that puts on the local budget. And the thing is, these things can be fixed," she said.

Liberal Leader Stephen Del Duca told AM800 earlier this week that if he is elected he would open conversations about the uploading proccess, much like the NDP's Horwath now says.

The city is about to begin another phase of a $10-million project to rebuild the eastbound lanes of from Dominion Boulevard to Dougall Avenue.