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Province moves ahead on plan to renew Manitoba’s infrastructure

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Jobs and the Economy Minister Theresa Oswald held her first meeting today of what will be many in putting together a plan to renew Manitoba’s infrastructure.

"We're bringing together Manitoba businesses, municipalities and workers' associations to identify our strategic economic infrastructure priorities and get down to building," Oswald said in news release. "It can't happen unless we work together."

Today's meeting was attended by representatives from the Manitoba Heavy Construction Association, the Manitoba Trucking Association, the Association of Manitoba Municipalities, the Brandon, Winnipeg, Manitoba and Aboriginal chambers of commerce, the Manitoba Federation of Labour, the Winnipeg Airports Authority, CAA and CentrePort Canada.

"There is growing recognition that sustained and strategic investment in core infrastructure is one of the most effective ways for governments to fuel economic growth," Chris Lorenc, president of the Manitoba Heavy Construction Association, said.

Joining Oswald on behalf of the province were Infrastructure and Transportation Minister Steve Ashton, Municipal Government Minister Stan Struthers, Children and Youth Opportunities Minister Kevin Chief, minister responsible for the City of Winnipeg, and Finance Minister Jennifer Howard.

Additional meetings take place later this month and December.

Meanwhile, the East Side Road Authority said today that construction has started on a new bridge over the Bloodvein River that will link Bloodvein First Nation to the rest of the province. The new bridge is scheduled to open to traffic in the fall of 2014, providing road access to the community of approximately 1,700 people.

To date, three new bridges and 24 kilometres of new road have been constructed on the 156 km all-season road from PR 304 to Berens River First Nation. The Bloodvein River Bridge, along with the 17 km of road construction currently underway, are the final works needed to provide Bloodvein First Nation with road access.

For more information on the East Side Transportation Initiative, go to www.eastsideroadauthority.mb.ca

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