The four-laning of Highway 69 will be able to move forward more quickly now that the province and the federal government have come to an agreement regarding environmental assessments.
The federal environmental assessment for the entire remaining 102 kilometres of proposed four-laning of Highway 69 has been ongoing since June 2010, according to a press release from Sudbury MPP Rick Bartolucci.
However, co-ordination of federal and provincial legislated information requirements in a single federal environmental assessment process posed a significant challenge.
“I am pleased that the federal government has accepted our proposal and we can now move forward with this very important project,” Bartolucci said, in the press release.
“The completion of Highway 69 four-laning will be a great benefit to residents, industry and visitors.”
The Federal Review Team formally notified the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) that it was unable to make a decision on the current environmental assessment for the entire 102 kilometres of proposed highway four-laning.
MTO subsequently proposed five distinct projects in support of a phased approach to the federal environmental assessment, for consideration by federal agencies.
Transport Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada have accepted MTO’s proposal.
“We know that investments in highway infrastructure are important for creating jobs and fostering prosperity throughout our communities," Bartolucci said. "This agreement brings us one step closer to the completion of Highway 69.”
Posted by Heidi Ulrichsen