TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - April 3, 2013) - Members of the community gathered together at the Bayview Pedestrian Bridge today to celebrate an announcement by the Honourable Lisa Raitt, on behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario). John Carmichael, Member of Parliament for Don Valley West, accompanied Minister Raitt.
Under the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund (CIIF), Minister Raitt announced federal funding of up to $822,000 for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) to rehabilitate and reopen the Bayview Pedestrian Bridge, which crosses over five lanes of traffic on a major Toronto roadway, Bayview Avenue. In December 2011, the 59-year-old deteriorated bridge was deemed unsafe for users and was closed, affecting thousands of community members, including people with impaired vision.
In compliance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, work on this project involves the replacement of the bridge structure, the overpass walking surface, the roof and the stair towers. Work will also include the installation of an accessibility ramp and a new elevator, as well as the complete rebuild of north- and south-bound shelters for vehicle drop-off and pick-up.
"Our Government is pleased to partner with the Canadian National Institute for the Blind to rehabilitate the Bayview Pedestrian Bridge," said Minister Raitt. "Through the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund, our Government continues to support projects that improve safety and universal accessibility and stimulate the economy in communities across southern Ontario."
"Not only is the Bayview Pedestrian Bridge important from a safety and accessibility perspective for CNIB's clients who are blind or partially sighted, but we have heard through our community consultation that it is an important local asset for neighbouring residents," said John Rafferty, President and CEO, CNIB. "This generous funding will energize the bridge project in terms of securing the remaining resources required to begin construction. We are confident that community partners will come forward to support the initiative."
The Fund supports, on a cost-shared basis, repairs and improvements to existing community infrastructure that is accessible for use by the public. Recipients of the Fund may receive contributions of up to $1 million and must leverage a minimum of 50 percent of funding from other sources. Please see the backgrounder for more information on CIIF. The complete list of approved CIIF projects is now available on FedDev Ontario's website at www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca/CIIF.
Created in 2009, FedDev Ontario supports the southern Ontario economy by building on the region's strengths and creating opportunities for jobs and economic growth. In Budget 2013, the Government of Canada demonstrated its continued commitment to workers, families and communities in southern Ontario with the renewal of FedDev Ontario. Economic Action Plan 2013 provides $920 million over five years for the Agency, starting on April 1, 2014. As part of the renewal, FedDev Ontario will be allocating $200 million over five years for a new Advanced Manufacturing Fund in Ontario. To learn more, please visit www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca or call 1-866-593-5505.
In Budget 2013, the Government of Canada indicated it will be moving forward with the new Building Canada plan, the largest long-term federal commitment to Canadian infrastructure in our nation's history: $53 billion over the next 10 years.
As outlined by the Prime Minister, the Government of Canada remains focused on what Canadians care most about: their families, the safety of our streets and communities, their pride in being a citizen of this country, and their personal financial security.
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Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund
The national Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund provides $150 million over two years for repairs and improvements to existing public community infrastructure. The Fund is being delivered by regional development agencies across Canada. FedDev Ontario is responsible for administering the program in Ontario, drawing on its expertise in the delivery of infrastructure programs, while the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario (FedNor) is using its knowledge of the region to manage communications activities related to the Fund in northern Ontario.
Organizations that are receiving funding include the following:
- local or regional governments or related agencies;
- provincial entities that provide municipal-type services to communities;
- not-for-profit organizations; and
- First Nations governments, including band or tribal councils or their legally designated representatives.
The Fund will benefit many types of community infrastructure, including community centres, cultural centres, parks, libraries, recreational facilities, tourism facilities, and other existing community infrastructure assets that have a local community impact.
All projects must be completed by March 31, 2014.
IF THERE IS A DISCREPANCY BETWEEN ANY PRINTED VERSION AND THE ELECTRONIC VERSION OF THIS NEWS RELEASE, THE ELECTRONIC VERSION WILL PREVAIL.
This news release is available online at www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca.
Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear