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Transportation and Works
April 27, 2011

Searston Gut Bridge to be Replaced

Through funding provided in Budget 2011 Standing Strong: For Prosperity. For Our Future. For Newfoundland and Labrador, the Department of Transportation and Works will replace the Searston Gut Bridge in the Codroy Valley in Western Newfoundland.

The Honourable Tom Hedderson, Minister of Transportation and Works, was joined by the Honourable Joan Burke, Minister of Education and MHA for St. George’s-Stephenville East, as he made the announcement today at the Wreckhouse Haven Café in Doyles.

“Today I am stating our government’s commitment to replace this bridge and restore a traffic route used by many in the area,” said Minister Hedderson. “Our government has made roads and bridges a priority as part of our overall infrastructure strategy and this is another example of how our infrastructure investments are benefiting all regions of our province.”

The Searston Gut Bridge, between Searston and Millville in the Codroy Valley, was put in place as a temporary structure in the late 1970s after the Grand Codroy River Bridge failed.

In November 2010, safety concerns with the bridge’s foundations and supporting structures were identified during an engineering inspection and the bridge was immediately closed to all traffic.

“In working with people in the region, it is clear that this bridge has become a major part of the everyday activities of residents and businesses of the area and I am very pleased funding has been allocated to replace the structure,” said Minister Burke. “Bridges are important structures that connect our communities and I am pleased that our government has been doing what is necessary to ensure that these links remain in place for the benefit of all who use them.”

The Department of Transportation and Works is currently reviewing design options for the Searston Gut Bridge. When re-opened, the bridge will be a one-lane structure, as currently exists, with new foundations.

Budget 2011 Standing Strong: For Prosperity. For Our Future. For Newfoundland and Labrador provides more than $1 billion for provincial infrastructure investments. This includes $216.4 million in Provincial Government funding for road and bridge improvements throughout the province. This funding will be supplemented by an additional $35.2 million in Federal Government funding, providing for a total road and bridge investment in 2011-12 of $251.6 million.

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Media contacts:

Roger Scaplen
Director of Communications
Department of Transportation and Works
709-729-3015, 697-5267
Bernadette Noseworthy
Executive Assistant to
Honourable Joan Burke
MHA for St. George’s–Stephenville East

2011 04 27             1:15 p.m.

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