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Federal Environment Minister’s Comments on Pulling Back Investment in Road Infrastructure, Raises Eyebrows and Criticism (MP Strahl VIDEO)

Ottawa (with files from CTV, Global) – Highway expansion is a rather touchy subject in the Fraser Valley, and from a PR stand point, this was a fire storm. The Provincial election in BC is October 19 and Highway 1 is a hot button issue.

Facing pushback from premiers, after stating the federal government will stop investing in new road infrastructure, Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault tried to backtrack Wednesday, saying he “should have been more specific.”

“Of course we’re funding roads, we have programs to fund roads, but we have said, and maybe I should have been more specific in the past, is that we don’t have funds for large projects like the Troisième lien,” Guilbeault said, referencing the proposed third connection point between Quebec City and Lèvis, Que.

Guilbeault has now been accused of being unsympathetic to Canadians who don’t live in large urban centres with functional transit systems.

As expected, reaction was swift and pointed. B.C. Premier David Eby said, “The province is not waiting for the feds. You’ll see the early work that is already going on out there.”

In B.C., the federal government has already promised funds to upgrade Highway 1, the Massey Tunnel project and repair work and infrastructure needed in the Sumas Prairie following the devastating flooding in 2021.

Eby said Highway 1 is a national trade corridor, not a simple road project.

Chilliwack-Hope MP Mark Strahl’s comments on Facebook:

Eby said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau needs to clarify the comments made.

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