Notes for an address about the Lansdowne Border Crossing
I am delighted to be here to make an important infrastructure announcement related to our Beyond the Border Action Plan, and to share some important news about Economic Action Plan 2013 and the New Building Canada Plan.
It is my pleasure to announce today that our government is investing up to 60 million dollars for improvements to the Lansdowne border crossing to make it more efficient, secure and reliable for trade and travel.
Funding will flow through the Gateways and Border Crossings Fund.
To date, the Government of Canada has dedicated over 2.1 billion dollars under the fund to ensure the efficient flow of goods and people between Canada and the rest of the world.
Investments like this produce multiple benefits for Canadians and our economy.
In addition to new jobs and growth in Ontario’s economy, these infrastructure improvements at Lansdowne, involving the complete renovation and expansion of the entire Canadian plaza and facilities for processing commercial vehicles and passenger traffic, will reduce wait times and alleviate traffic congestion, while at the same time strengthening security.
And by reducing delays, this project will also lower vehicle emissions resulting from long line-ups at the border, and help people reach their destinations faster.
When truckers spend less time at the border, it means they can come home quicker and pick up the next load.
This is great news because Lansdowne is a key crossing between Canada and the United States, with over 14 billion dollars of two-way trade passing through in 2012.
It connects Highway 401 with major travel and transport routes in the United States and, as such, requires expansion to accommodate projected increases in traffic.
We need to keep trade moving. And modern, efficient infrastructure is the foundation of a strong, productive economy.
That’s why in our first Budget in 2007, our government launched the Building Canada Plan. This plan has been an overwhelming success.
Since 2006, we have made unprecedented investments in over 43,000 infrastructure projects to build roads, bridges, commuter rail, and other public infrastructure.
Our government has made infrastructure a priority. And this year we are going even further.
Our commitment to Canada’s continued success in the 21st century global economy was further reinforced with the recent release of Canada’s Economic Action Plan 2013.
Budget 2013 introduces a New Building Canada Plan that will lead to better roads, bridges and public transit in cities and communities all across Canada.
It is the largest long-term federal commitment to Canadian infrastructure in our nation’s history. Overall, the new Building Canada plan includes 70 billion dollars in federal infrastructure funding over 10 years.
Canada’s Economic Action Plan – with these strategic investments at Lansdowne – demonstrates our government’s commitment to a safe, secure and efficient border.
We are improving our border infrastructure because we recognize these crossings are integral to our economy, Canadians’ high standard of living and quality of life.
And these investments are creating jobs, while helping to reduce congestion, cut wait times and get our products to export markets sooner.
Ladies and gentlemen, this project is among the key border crossings identified in the Beyond the Border Action Plan.
I am very proud to play a part in this progress, and I look forward to seeing the long-term benefits in the years ahead.