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July 21, 2019

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Cash for Waverley underpass committed

Feds, province and city announce funding for long awaited project

Winnipeg South Centre MP Joyce Bateman announces federal funding for the Waverley underpass with Mayor Brian Bowman and MLA Drew Caldwell, Minister of Municipal Government. All three levels of government have committed to funding the project estimated to cost $155.1 million.

DANIELLE DA SILVA - SOU'WESTER

Winnipeg South Centre MP Joyce Bateman announces federal funding for the Waverley underpass with Mayor Brian Bowman and MLA Drew Caldwell, Minister of Municipal Government. All three levels of government have committed to funding the project estimated to cost $155.1 million.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 31/7/2015 (1450 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

So long, Waverley train.

The bane of many south Winnipeg drivers will soon be taken care of due to a funding commitment from all three levels of government.

On July 30, the federal, provincial, and municipal governments announced funding commitments totalling $155.1 million to build an underpass at Waverley Street and the CN mainline.

Construction will begin on the new underpass — which will allow an estimated 30,000 cars avoid 40 train crossings daily — in the spring 2016. The train crossing has become so notorious in Winnipeg it even has its own Twitter account where unhappy commuters go to vent their frustration. The underpass was also identified by the city as its No. 1 infrastructure project.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 31/7/2015 (1450 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

So long, Waverley train.

The bane of many south Winnipeg drivers will soon be taken care of due to a funding commitment from all three levels of government.

On July 30, the federal, provincial, and municipal governments announced funding commitments totalling $155.1 million to build an underpass at Waverley Street and the CN mainline.

Construction will begin on the new underpass — which will allow an estimated 30,000 cars avoid 40 train crossings daily — in the spring 2016. The train crossing has become so notorious in Winnipeg it even has its own Twitter account where unhappy commuters go to vent their frustration. The underpass was also identified by the city as its No. 1 infrastructure project.

Both the province and the federal government have committed $45.9 million to the project with the City of Winnipeg covering the remaining $63.3 million required to finish the underpass.

Federal funds are coming from the Building Canada Fund while provincial dollars are coming from the province’s five-year infrastructure investment plan.

With the announcement comes relief for Coun. John Orlikow (River Heights-Fort Garry) who has been working on this project for many years and included the issue in his re-election campaign this past October.  

"It’s a long time coming but very welcome," Orlikow said. "Getting the city to make it a priority took a long time and a lot of effort, to get the province on board took a lot of effort, and finally to get the federal government to commit on the Building Canada Fund, took a fair bit of effort."

"But everybody saw the light at the end and we’re moving forward."

The Waverley underpass project also includes the reconstruction of Waverley Street between Wilkes and Taylor Avenues; the twinning of Taylor Avenue; and improved active transportation and pedestrian pathways.

Winnipeg South Centre MP Joyce Bateman championed the underpass, saying it will enhance the safety of the neighbourhood by eliminating the at-grade crossing.

"This is an important announcement for rail safety, this is an important announcement for my community, and I have been working very hard on this announcement since day one," Bateman said.

"This has been important for a long time and I got it done."

According to Orlikow, the Waverley underpass in conjunction with improvements to the Pembina underpass will increase the overall flow of traffic through River Heights and Fort Garry.

"I think we have a very good compromise," said Orlikow. "We’ve worked with consultants to make sure the impact of this Waverley underpass minimizes any negative impact in the local neighbourhoods. It keeps the traffic flowing and it’s not designed to increase the load."

According to a spokeswoman for the City of Winnipeg, CN Rail has an obligation to contribute funding towards the Waverley Underpass Project but the monetary amount is not yet known.

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Twitter: @SouwesterWPG

Danielle Da Silva

Danielle Da Silva
Community journalist — The Sou'wester

Danielle Da Silva is the community journalist for The Sou'wester. Email her at danielle.dasilva@canstarnews.com

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