Transportation and Works
Labrador and Aboriginal Affairs
October 26, 2010
Minister Announces Changes to Labrador
With the opening of Phase III of the Trans Labrador
Highway (TLH), the transportation needs of Labrador have changed
dramatically. With a highway now connecting Southern Labrador, through
Lake Melville to Labrador West, the passenger, vehicle and freight
service currently offered by the MV Sir Robert Bond between
Lewisporte, Cartwright and Happy Valley-Goose Bay will be discontinued
at the end of the current shipping season.
"Now that there is a highway link connecting the
communities currently served by this run, the time has come to
discontinue the passenger and freight service between Lewisporte,
Cartwright and Happy Valley-Goose Bay," said the Honourable Tom
Hedderson, Minister of Transportation and Works. "This is a natural step
in light of the approximately $275 million investment in Phases II and
III of the TLH and is consistent with the delivery and maintenance of
transportation infrastructure and services in other communities that are
accessible by road."
In addition to the construction cost of Phases II and
III of the TLH, the annual maintenance cost of these sections of highway
will be in excess of $5 million. The movement of people and goods is
also faster and more flexible via the road connection.
Lewisporte will remain the primary terminal port on
the island for the shipment of freight to the North Coast of Labrador
while Happy Valley-Goose Bay will remain the primary Labrador port for
the North Coast freight service. This configuration will remain
in effect for at least the next several years while the Department of
Transportation and Works monitors changes in trade patterns and the
movement of goods as a result of the new highway.
Cartwright will no longer be a scheduled port of call
for the North Coast freight service, currently provided by the MV
Astron. There will be no change to the current configuration of the
passenger and freight service provided by the MV Northern Ranger.
"As is evidenced by our commitment to the continuing
enhancement of the highway network in Labrador and our decision to
provide year-round ferry service across the Strait of Belle Isle, our
government is working to enhance Labrador's transportation network for
the long-term benefit of all," said the Honourable John Hickey, Minister
of Labrador Affairs. "As this province's transportation needs continue
to evolve, we will continue to look to the future to ensure that we have
the necessary plans and infrastructure in place to meet those needs."