Mr. Arnold Peters (Timiskaming):
Mr. Speaker, I rise to support this bill. I am appreciative of the remarks made by the hon. member who has just taken his seat in regard to the support that this bridge is receiving from the people in the area of Three Rivers itself. As hon. members know, this bill was first introduced in the Senate in June, 1956, by Senator Dessureault and received the support of the government of Canada at that time. The responsibility put on the people in that area was that the bridge had to be built within a period of three years. It is gratifying to know that that responsibility has been accepted and, because of the spirit of co-operation among the citizens of that area, there is some hope that the bridge will be built in the very near future. The bridge will be a large project. It is expected it will be 6,500 feet long if the original plans of Dr. Pratley are proceeded with. Including the approaches, it will have a total length of
Some question has been raised both in the area itself and in the Senate since the original bill was first passed with respect to whether sufficient consideration has been given to increasing the width of the bridge because of the increase in the number of motor cars that will be using it. According to present plans, the bridge will be 26 feet wide which means 90205-6-3321
there will be only two traffic lanes 13 feet in width. The suggestion has been made that a larger project should be considered involving a four-lane rather than a two-lane highway.
It is my hope and that of my colleagues that the bridge will be proceeded with as soon as possible. According to the last estimate, it is going to cost approximately $12J million, with a maximum anticipated cost of $15 million. Over a period of years this bridge has been promised by politicians in provincial and federal elections in every constituency that will be served by the bridge. I accept the word of the hon. member for Drummond-Arthabaska (Mr. Boulanger) that the radio stations and civic-minded people in the area are interested in the bridge and that they have probably forgotten some of the election promises that have been made and are going to go ahead and build a bridge themselves. There are some questions with respect to this project that I think should be answered. The first one I should like to raise is why it should be necessary for the bridge to be authorized by the federal government. I am aware of some of the reasons but they do not seem to apply-
Subtopic: ST. LAWRENCE RIVER BRIDGE