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This article was published 29/7/2015 (1671 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
For the third consecutive day, one of Winnipeg’s Conservative MPs will make a major funding announcement and this one is expected to be significant.
Joyce Bateman (Winnipeg South Centre) is holding a news conference at Waverley Street and Taylor Avenue Thursday morning, where it’s expected she will announce Ottawa will help city hall pay for the $175-million rail underpass project.
Joining Bateman for the news event will be Mayor Brian Bowman and Drew Caldwell, the provincial municipal government minister.
The city identified the underpass as its top priority in its pitch to Ottawa’s Building Canada Fund.
The railway crossing sees 30,000 vehicles daily but increasing rail traffic is a constant headache for suburban commuters.
City officials have said the $175-million price tag is a rough, ball-park figure and further design work is necessary to pin down the cost with more accuracy.
The city expects its share of the project to be around $64 million, with the province and Ottawa picking up the remaining costs.
City council had hoped Ottawa would announce funding for two major infrastructure projects — the other being the $250-million Marion Street widening and underpass at Archibald Street — but it’s not yet known if the federal government will commit itself to both projects.
Thursday’s funding announcement will be the second one by Bateman this week. On Tuesday, she dropped by city hall where she announced the city would receive $40.9 million for 41 road improvement and transit projects from the federal gas tax fund.
On Wednesday, MP Lawrence Toet (Elmwood-Kildonan) announced a total of $1.45 million in funding to 11 local projects through the Canada 150 community infrastructure program fund, with city hall getting more than $1 million of that money for three projects and the rest shared by several community organizations.
The flood of federal announcements by the Harper MPs is expected to herald the calling of the Oct. 19 federal election, which some have speculated will occur Sunday during a Conservative party rally in Montreal.
Aldo Santin is a veteran newspaper reporter who first carried a pen and notepad in 1978 and joined the Winnipeg Free Press in 1986, where he has covered a variety of beats and specialty areas including education, aboriginal issues, urban and downtown development. Santin has been covering city hall since 2013.