SAINT JOHN, NB — Finishing up the One Mile House Interchange has been slow going and full of setback such as unexpected extra costs and bankruptcy, but on Dec. 13, the interchange officially opened.
“This new infrastructure will provide the trucking industry with more direct access to the city’s industrial park,” said Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Claude Williams. “It supports economic growth and development in the Port City while improving safety and traffic flow.”
The new interchange over Route 1 connects Route 1 with the industrial park on the east side of Saint John and is meant to re-direct truck traffic so as to ease congestion on city streets.
It also has a series of overpasses that lead to the Bayside Drive industrial area, which was meant to divert increased truck traffic expected from the construction of a second oil refinery that has since been cancelled, according to the CBC.
“This new interchange will significantly improve road safety for area residents and travellers while reducing congestion. Through this project, and others like it, our government is creating new jobs and stimulating the local economy,” said Saint John MP Rodney Weston.
Construction began in 2009, but has not been smooth sailing. The original contractor went bankrupt and completion was delayed for a year, leading to road closures and disruptions for local businesses, the CBC writes.
The price tag was also much larger than originally expected. The estimated cost was $43.5 million, but ended up being $83 million, which was divided between the provincial government, which paid $51.3 million and the federal government, which paid $31.7 million.