$3.8B to build Gordie Howe bridge, complete by end of 2024

Construction on the Gordie Howe International Bridge can begin now that a fixed-price contract has been signed.

Construction along with 30 years maintenance pushes price tag to $5.7 billion

The Gordie Howe International Bridge will have six lanes in total with a multi-use pathway for pedestrians and cyclists. (Courtesy of Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority)

The Gordie Howe International Bridge is expected to cost $5.7 billion to build and maintain, and will be in service by the end of 2024.

Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority (WDBA) announced Friday morning they have signed a fixed-price contract with Bridging North America, the consortium chosen to build and maintain the structure.

"The project will be built to the highest standards of engineering incorporating sustainability, aesthetics and functionality," said Dwight Duncan, chair of the WDBA board of directors, in a news release.

Of the $5.7 billion, construction is expected to cost $3.8 billion and the rest is for operations and maintenance.

The consortium expects the bridge construction will create 2,500 jobs.

Construction is expected to start in October and take about 74 months, or just over six years. (Jason Viau/CBC)

Community benefits

A community benefits plan was a focus for some Windsor residents living in Sandwich Towne and those in the Delray community in Detroit. That agreement is expected to be finalized in six months after financial close.

There were more than 230 suggestions brought forward during the past three years while discussions of building a new bridge was happening.

"Bridging North America has identified numerous options that range from truly innovative to simple solutions that recognize the uniqueness of Sandwich and Delray," the presentation reads.

For now the design of the bridge looks like it will include a multi-use path for pedestrians and cyclists along with having three lanes in each direction.

The presentation outlines that there will be green space equivalent to 225 football fields within the two portal of entries.

Construction is expected to begin in October. It's expected to take 74 months, just over six years.