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Time to get moving on Maley Drive: Sudbury chamber

Dear Mayor and Council, RE: Maley Drive Extension As you are aware, the Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce has been active in advocating for the completion of the Maley Drive Extension for several years now.
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The Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce has sent an open letter to city council calling for them to get behind the Maley Drive Extension. File photo.
Dear Mayor and Council,

RE: Maley Drive Extension

As you are aware, the Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce has been active in advocating for the completion of the Maley Drive Extension for several years now. Our members have consistently identified road infrastructure and congestion as a priority for the City of Greater Sudbury.

We would like to reiterate our support for the Maley Drive Extension.

The chamber believes that the construction of the extension will create positive ripple effects in the community in terms of economic growth, infrastructure, reduced traffic congestion, road safety, and new jobs. A third east-west arterial road will also lessen business disruptions, redirect large slurry trucks reducing wear and tear on our roads and will result in improved efficiencies in the transportation of supplies.

The time to act on Maley Drive is now and we encourage council to make a swift decision to prioritize the advancement of the extension. With the new federal government currently undertaking pre-budget consultations, we believe that there is a short window of opportunity for our community to secure very important funding that will boost our economy in a time when we are facing challenging global growth conditions that are impacting us locally.

The federal government is looking for shovel ready projects to fund and it is our understanding that they will move quickly to get dollars out the door to stimulate the economy. There are many factors that are currently working in favour of the Maley Drive Extension: the provincial nod to commit to the project, the provincial prioritization of the project under the new Building Canada Plan, as well as the current federal and provincial political alignment.

Further, we have two federal representatives at the local level on the government side seeking to represent the needs of Greater Sudbury on the national stage. The city has also invested significantly in maintaining Maley Drive in a construction ready state.

This type of alignment is rare; it is not known if and when we will come across an opportunity of this magnitude again. We are confident that these provincial and federal infrastructure dollars will be allocated elsewhere, likely in Southern Ontario, if we do not urgently move forward with our own funding request in support of the extension. We also remind council that although there are many worthy projects requiring funds in Greater Sudbury, these specific provincial and federal funds have been earmarked and therefore cannot be easily transferred to other initiatives.

As a city with a renewed long-term economic plan, we need to think about what will further position us as the regional hub of the North. The completion of the Maley Extension will help position Sudbury to take advantage of future investments and projects. This project will not only benefit Greater Sudbury but will also be critical to enhancing regional economic development - providing easier access to provincial highways, improving Canadian public infrastructure, and benefitting our globally-significant mining sector.

We would like to see these valuable infrastructure dollars being spent in our community to bolster economic growth in our region.

Enclosed please find a copy of a 2014 motion advanced by the chamber’s Maley Drive Task Force and approved by our Board of Directors that outlines the chamber’s position on Maley Drive.

We would be happy to discuss this further with you. If interested, please contact us at policy@sudburychamber.ca.

We look forward to your response on this matter.

Yours truly,

Debbi M. Nicholson
PRESIDENT & CEO

David Boyce, Chair
MALEY DRIVE TASK FORCE


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