Alberta commits $100M for road and bridge projects around province
Funds will be available from 2017 to 2019, Transportation Minister Brian Mason says
The provincial government will spend $100 million on road and bridge projects throughout Alberta, Transportation Minister Brian Mason announced this afternoon in Calgary.
The money will be distributed through the Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program (STIP), an ongoing program that saw its funding cut in 2013.
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"We believe that restoring this funding is the responsible thing to do and the right thing to do," Mason said.
"Alberta's transportation infrastructure is the backbone of our province."
Municipalities and counties will be invited to apply for the funding, which will be released in two stages -— $35 million in 2017-2018 and $65 million in 2018-2019.
The money is primarily intended for smaller and rural municipalities, Mason said.
"It's also available for airports, which is a key economic driver for smaller communities," he said.
The funding was contained in Budget 2015's overall capital expenditure plan, but Monday's announcement specified that it will be funnelled through STIP.
Municipalities group praises STIP funding
The head of the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties (AAMDC) applauded the province for renewing the STIP funding.
"A modern system of roads and bridges is essential to daily life in Alberta's communities," Al Kemmere said in a release. "Our industries rely on our transportation network to move goods to market quickly and efficiently, and Albertans everywhere depend on safe access to jobs and emergency services."
"Investing in roads and bridges now is a great step in enabling our communities to grow sustainably in the future."