Transportation and Works
January 17, 2007

$150 Million Targeted for Province�s Roads

The Williams Government continues its aggressive approach to highway revitalization by announcing it intends to invest $150 million to improve provincial roads this year.

The Honourable John Hickey, Minister of Transportation and Works, confirmed today the province will once again invest $60 million in the 2007-08 budget for the Provincial Roads Improvement Program and plans to inject a further $90 million for various roads projects under other programs.

�This is a great day for motorists who drive the roads of Newfoundland and Labrador,� said Minister Hickey. �This government�s unprecedented commitment to province�s highways cannot be denied.�

The Provincial Roads Improvement Program has doubled in value from $30 million in 2004-05 to $60 million in 2006-07 and will be $60 million again in 2007-08.

Among the projects slated for the 2007-08 Provincial Roads Improvement Program is approximately $5 million to address wheel-rutting on the Trans-Canada Highway, and approximately $4.5 million for bridge repair and replacement. The announcement of specific roads projects will commence in the coming weeks.

�This significant funding clearly indicates government is committed to providing the best transportation network possible for all sectors of society,� said Minister Hickey.

�This funding is an investment in our economy. It impacts the tourism and trucking industries, to name a few, and is obviously of great benefit to local motorists as well, who will encounter smoother, safer roads in the near future.�

Of course, the early announcement of the Roads Improvement Program will allow the tendering process and construction to begin earlier than in past years. Last year, government pre-approved roads funding earlier than usual which was embraced by the industry.

�I�m very happy government has once again committed to funding early in the year,� said Dan Spracklin, president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Road Builders and Heavy Equipment Association. �The early tendering worked out very well last year with very little carry-over.�

In fact, only around two per cent of the anticipated work was carried over in this current fiscal year.

�This government will spend over $59 million of the $60 million roads improvement funds in this current fiscal year and we fully expect to spend the entire amount in the next fiscal year as well,� said Minister Hickey.

In addition to the $60 million Roads Improvement Program, $25 million will be invested for repairs to sections of the Trans-Canada Highway in the central and west coast regions of the province. Funding will come from the Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund (C-SIF) and will be cost-shared between the provincial and federal governments.

Other road improvement plans include:

  • $17 million for ongoing construction of Phase III of the Trans-Labrador Highway;
  • $15 million to commence hard-surfacing of Phase I of the Trans-Labrador Highway � subject to cost-sharing with the federal government;
  • $15 million for summer maintenance, including line-painting, pothole patching and guide rail replacement;
  • $10 million to start the Torbay By-Pass and extend the Team Gushue Highway, subject to federal government cost-sharing;
  • $8 million for land acquisition for road right-of-ways.


Media contact:
David Salter
Director of Communications
Department of Transportation and Works
709-729-3015, 691-3577

2007 01 17                             10:35 a.m.

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