Ambassador Bridge owners taking steps to improve 'catchment system'

The company that owns the Ambassador Bridge is taking steps to improve the "catchment system" that lies underneath its deck.
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      The company that owns the Ambassador Bridge is taking steps to improve the "catchment system" that lies underneath the bridge's deck.

      Stan Korosec, the director of security and Canadian government relations for the Detroit International Bridge Company, said that repair work had begun over the weekend.

      "Basically these are two by six by twelve foot long sheets of wood that will catch anything that will fall from the bridge," he told CBC News in a telephone interview.

      "We're concentrating on the areas over public right-of-ways and the city streets, even in the areas where our engineers have found that there is no danger of anything falling."

      Korosec said the work began on the weekend and is likely to continue for a couple of weeks. He said the work is not expected to impact traffic on the bridge itself, or on the streets that pass beneath it.

      From the City of Windsor's perspective, the work taking place on the bridge is a step in the right direction, said Helga Reidel, the city's chief administrative officer.

      The city had been publicly urging the company to make any needed repairs in the wake of debris falling onto a road that passes beneath the international crossing on the Windsor side. It had also closed portions of several streets near the bridge.

      Reidel said the city had noticed the work beginning on the weekend and has since received confirmation of that process from the company.

      "We were very pleased to note that, [but] we won't be removing our road closures at this time until we're satisfied that the work will make our roads safe," she said in a telephone interview with CBC News.  "But certainly we're pleased that they've started that work."

      The bridge company and city officials held rival news conferences last week, both of which centred on the debris issue.

      The confirmation on Monday of the repair work taking place seemed to signal a slight decrease in the tension between the two sides.

      "They've started the work and really, our concern is the safety of our roadways, and we're pleased that they have started something in order to try and move us in the right direction," Reidel said.


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