The “essential” extension of Autoroute 3 is even closer to reality

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The widening of Highway 3 between Essex and Leamington took one step closer to reality on Friday as Infrastructure Ontario and the Ministry of Transportation announced the selection of three teams to prepare and submit bids on the design and build. construction of the next phase through a request for proposal process.

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The long-awaited final phase of the widening of the motorway from two to four lanes will extend over a 15.6 kilometer stretch of approximately 1.2 kilometers east of Arner Townline (Essex Road 23) to 1.1 km east of Union Avenue (Essex Road 34).

Leamington Mayor Hilda MacDonald said residents of her town would be grateful the project took the next step.

“It’s a benefit to the people who live in this end of the county,” she said. “I’ve been driving the road to Windsor for the last few weeks and it definitely gets easier to drive once you get to the separate highway (past Essex).

“I’m sure the experience will be better for everyone once it is done and there will be assurance that it is safer. With the number of trucks on the highway now, that’s definitely more than needed. We’re just happy that this is happening.

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Every day, up to 17,300 vehicles travel between Essex and Leamington on Highway 3, long known as one of the most dangerous stretches of road in the region.

Traffic is indicated along a two-lane section of Highway 3 in Kingsville on Friday.
Traffic is indicated along a two-lane section of Highway 3 in Kingsville on Friday. Photo by Dan Janisse /Windsor Star

Construction is currently underway to widen 4.9 kilometers of Highway 3 from Maidstone Avenue to Arner Townline in Essex and this section is expected to be completed in 2023.

A request for qualification process was launched by the government in June for the next phase, and three teams were selected to bid on the project during the tendering process.

Among the selected teams were Erie Shores Infrastructure Partners, led by Brennan Infrastructures Inc. and Amico Infrastructures Inc., a team known as Highway 3 Corridor Developers, led by Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc. and Plenary Americas LP, while the third team is Pavage Coco Inc.

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These three are to submit proposals that detail how they will design, build and finance the project which will then be evaluated by the Ontario Ministries of Infrastructure and Transportation with a successful bidder to be announced in fall 2022.

“Road safety has been – and always will be – a priority for our government,” said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation for the province. “By widening Highway 3, we are delivering on our promise to make travel easier and safer for the thousands of people who depend on this route every day.

“This project will support good jobs during construction and, when completed, will ensure that our truckers and carriers can get their goods to market faster. “

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