Prime Minister Stephen Harper welcomed the completion of a new four-lane expressway in Winnipeg, Manitoba, that will connect CentrePort Canada, Manitoba’s inland port, to the core national highway system. This new expressway will be known as CentrePort Canada Way. The PM was accompanied by Greg Selinger, Premier of Manitoba, Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, and Diane Gray, President and CEO of CentrePort Canada.

Mr. Harper stated “I am pleased to be here today to celebrate the completion of CentrePort Canada Way. This new expressway will increase commercial flows through Winnipeg and the region, and will expand Canada’s access to new global markets.” The CentrePort Canada Way project consists of a new 9.1 km four-lane divided roadway and associated structures and interchanges. Construction began in the spring of 2010, and the expressway officially opens to traffic on November 22.

CentrePort Canada, Manitoba’s inland port, is a tri-modal transportation hub with businesses that focus on importing and exporting goods from Asia and Europe, and distributing those goods throughout North America by air, rail and road. The opening of this expressway will also help Canadian businesses in the region benefit from the unprecedented market access our Government is creating, including to the European Union, Asia and the United States.

The Government of Canada and the Province of Manitoba jointly committed $212.4 million for the project. The federal contribution consisted of up to $33.25 million under the Asia-Pacific Gateway and Corridor Initiative (APGCI) and $68.35 million under the Provincial/Territorial Base Funding Agreement. Manitoba provided $101.6 million and an additional $9.2 million for land acquisition. Since 2008, the Government of Canada has contributed $168.1 million towards projects in the area that support Manitoba’s inland port.

CentrePort Canada was created by provincial legislation in 2008 and the corporation opened its doors in November 2009. CentrePort Canada offers unique access to tri-modal transportation (road, rail and air) and features access to three class I rail carriers, an international trucking hub and Winnipeg’s James Armstrong Richardson International Airport. It is estimated that 26 million tonnes of exports and imports move to, from and through Manitoba on an annual basis.