WINDSOR (WWJ) – Work continues on the construction of a second bridge between the U.S. and the Canadian border.
A tour offered by the Detroit-Windsor Bridge Authority highlighted the over $300 million of work being carried out on the new Gordie Howe International Bridge is on track to open around 2023.
Much of the work now is on the Windsor side — with the installation of power and gas lines, clearing land, even relocating over 50 snakes.
Certified biologists were called in for an assist.
“They know how to handle snakes,” says spokesperson Mark Butler. “Coincidentally, one is called the Butler’s garter snake — it’s not names after me – it’s a small critter but they managed to get it. They put it in a bag and then it’s relocated to a safe area.”
On the U.S. side – officials are still working to acquire land in the Delray area — needed for the bridge.
Steve Toth lives in Delray — he says he’s not being treated fairly — and his story is part of the ongoing struggles that arise from the process of eminent domain – in which the government takes private property through condemnation proceedings.
“They evicted me,” says Toth. “I’m in the process of having the sheriff come to the door and throw everything I own out the door.”
Andy Doctoroff with the state says Toth has been offered a sizable settlement. “I can’t tell you how many services have been offered to Mr. Toth. To make sure that he is treated well.”
He says he certain all the land – including 20 parcels owned by Ambassador Bridge owner Manuel (Matty) Moroun will be acquired in time for the construction at the end of 2018. Doctoroff says they’ve acquired 93 percent of the required land.