In a press conference today, announcements were made regarding the conditions and safety of roads in Northern Ontario. See video :
Timmins – Today in Timmins, NDP MPPs Gilles Bisson (Timmins-James Bay) and John Vanthof (Timiskaming-Cochrane) announced the New Democrat plan for improving transportation across the north by restoring ONTC passenger rail service, improving winter road maintenance, twinning northern highways and creating new passing lanes.
"The Liberal decision to cancel the Northlander never made sense for northerners who depend on this vital transportation link between our communities," said Bisson. "The government talks a good talk about transit in Southern Ontario but only New Democrats have a plan to bring back passenger rail service to the north, make our winter roads safe and invest in northern infrastructure."
Bisson and Vanthof outlined NDP plans to twin northern highways and create new passing lanes at a rate of at least 30 kilometers per year. They noted that the government has let down northerners when it comes to winter road maintenance with private snow removal contracts. New Democrats vowed to make winter driving conditions safer by putting 200 new pieces of snow clearing equipment on northern roads to bring the total number of snowploughs and spreaders to 1300, an increase of nearly 20%.
"Northerners want the Northlander back. New Democrats have heard that message loud and clear and we will deliver," said Vanthof. "We’ve also heard in our communities, and through our Northern Road Report, that northerners are fed up with unsafe winter driving conditions on our roads. That’s why we’re taking real steps to fix the problem by putting 200 new pieces of equipment on the job."
Bisson and Vanthof said that New Democrats are putting northerners first with real plans to improve transportation across the north.