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Federal Government Approves New Windsor/Detroit Border Bridge

A rendering of the proposed new bridge, set to replace the 87-year-old Ambassador Bridge

The Canadian government has approved, with conditions, a new bridge to replace the 87-year-old Ambassador Bridge, the busiest commercial land border between Canada and the United States. 

The private owner of the Windsor/Detroit bridge can now begin building a six-lane replacement bridge, Minister Mark Garneau said in a Ministry of Transportation release.

“The Government of Canada recognizes the importance of ensuring the continued flow of trade and travelers between Windsor and Detroit, one of the most important Canada-United States border crossings,” Garneau said.

“The construction of the replacement Ambassador Bridge together with the Gordie Howe International Bridge project will ensure that Canadians continue to benefit from the efficient movement of people and goods at this crossing while providing infrastructure improvements for the local community.”

It is estimated the new bridge will cost $1B. 

"We all know there are those who never thought our permit would be approved," Matthew Moroun of the Detroit International Bridge Co. said in a news release.

"Hopefully, now we can all come together and take pride in watching a new bridge rise across the shared border between our great nations."

The Windsor-Detroit gateway is composed of the Ambassador Bridge, the Windsor-Detroit Tunnel, the Detroit-Windsor Truck Ferry and the Detroit River Rail Tunnel. 

It is the busiest commercial land border crossing between Canada and the United States, handling more than 25% of the overall Canada-U.S. trade per year, and approximately 30% of the trade carried by truck.

In 2015, 2.5 million trucks carrying over $120B in two-way trade crossed the Ambassador Bridge. The bridge is the second-busiest passenger vehicle crossing, with 4.2 million vehicle crossings in 2015.