Score one for the Moroun family. The Detroit International Bridge Co. has gained approval from Transport Canada to build a second span next to the Ambassador Bridge, which the Morouns and DIBC own.
It would be the longest cable stayed bridge in North America at 2190 feet.
Keep in mind, the Gordie Howe Bridge about two miles downriver in Delray is still planned. The city recently sold land in Delray to the State of Michigan for the project.
The Morouns have been fighting the Gordie Howe Bridge project for years.
According to the Windsor Star,
“All major permits for the project in recent years had been acquired aside from an Order in Council—approval from the federal cabinet required under legislation—in order for Moroun to launch construction.
That permission was granted unceremoniously in Ottawa on Wednesday, according to the bridge company.”
The new span would have six lanes and it’s privately funded. The DIBC says it has already spent $500 million on the $1 billion project.
In a statement, Matthew Moroun said,
“We especially thank Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Canada for issuance of the final permit supporting our company to make this major investment in international infrastructure.
“There have been many challenges our company has faced over the years in pursuit of this moment. We are now tasked with the duty to construct a privately-funded bridge with the hard work of thousands of engineers, steel workers, construction experts that will be employed to deliver this once in a lifetime project.”
They received permits from the U.S. in spring of 2016.
So now what? According to the Free Press, both bridges will be built. The older Ambassador Bridge, built in 1929, would be dismantled after the new span is built. Governor Rick Snyder said, "Construction on a replacement span would not begin unless and until further governmental approvals in the U.S. are obtained and several conditions established by Canada are met."
Whenever we find out when an actual bridge will be built, whether it be a second span of the Ambassador Bridge or the Gordie Howe Bridge, we’ll be sure to let you know.