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Backgrounder - Ontario government to four-lane Highway 11 in seven years


    TORONTO, Aug. 30 /CNW/ - The Ontario government today released its
Northern Ontario Highways Strategy (NOHS) - a record $1.8 billion, multi-year
plan for highway improvement and expansion in Northern Ontario.
    Included in the NOHS is the Ontario government's commitment to complete
the four-laning of Highway 11 from Huntsville to North Bay in seven years. The
government is investing close to $250 million to four-lane this section of
highway over the next five years. This investment will prepare northern
communities for future growth, support local businesses and promote economic
development and tourism.

    Projects Underway
    -----------------

    Four-Laning of Highway 11 from Emsdale to Katrine
    -  Widening from two to four lanes for six kilometres
    -  Constructing two new interchanges and six new bridges
    -  Investment: $39 million with the remaining $15 million being spent
       this year
    -  Work is underway and is expected to be completed later this year.

    Future Projects
    ---------------

    Four-Laning of Highway 11 from South River to Sundridge
    -  Widening from two to four lanes for 17 kilometres in four separate
       contracts
    -  Constructing three new interchanges and a new patrol yard at Boundary
       Road, north of Sundridge
    -  Investment: $144 million over five years
    -  Work is scheduled to begin in 2006 pending the necessary property
       acquisition and environmental approvals, with completion anticipated
       by 2010.

    Four-Laning of Highway 11 from Sundridge to Katrine
    -  Widening from two to four lanes for 24 kilometres in a series of
       contracts
    -  Constructing five new interchanges
    -  Widening of the Burk's Falls Bypass
    -  Investment: $89 million over the next five years
    -  Work is scheduled to begin in 2006 pending the necessary property
       acquisition and environmental approvals, with completion anticipated
       by 2012.

    Did You Know?
    -------------

    -  The daily value of goods carried on Highway 11 is more than $44
       million.
    -  Highway 11 is a very busy cottage route. More than 9,000 vehicles use
       this section of highway every day, increasing to 11,000 vehicles per
       day in the summer.
    -  Approximately 6,000 construction jobs will be created as a result of
       the Highway 11 four-laning projects.
    -  66 kilometres of Highway 11, between Huntsville and North Bay, is now
       four-laned and opened to traffic.
    -  Over the past five years, more than $175 million has been spent to
       four-lane Highway 11 between Huntsville and North Bay.

    For up-to-date road condition information on major highways, visit
www.roadinfo.mto.gov.on.ca or call the ministry's information line at         
1-800-268-4686.

    Disponible en français

                              www.mto.gov.on.ca

-30-
For further information: Danna O'Brien, Minister's Office, 
(416) 327-1815; Bob Nichols, Communications Branch, (416) 327-1158

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