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Antigonish residents upset with gov’t “side-stepping” on highway twinning

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ANTIGONISH – Residents of Antigonish are disappointed with the government’s lack of transparency around the 104-twinning project after the department of Transportation Infrastructure and Renewal (TIR) refused to answer questions at public accounts on Wednesday.

The government announced it plans to twin highway 104 between Antigonish and Pictou County through a Public Private Partnership (P3) earlier this year.

“We’re tired of this government side stepping questions about this process,” said Sarah O’Toole, member of a residence group concerned about the highway.

“People in Antigonish and Pictou County deserve to know why we are to have the only privately managed highway in the province. No one is disputing the need to twin this section – we just aren’t convinced that P3 is the solution.”

A report that came out in May written by Christopher Majka for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) showed that there is no benefit to P3 developments and that they cost the taxpayer significantly more money in the long run and are often poorly maintained and less safe. After the report was shared at public meetings this June a residence group formed to get answers from the government on this project.

“We deserve a safe and public highway just like everybody else,” said O’Toole. “The fact that this government seems dead-set on making a bad deal for the residents of Antigonish and Pictou County is baffling and we want answers from the minister responsible for this, Lloyd Hines and our MLA Randy Delorey. ”

For more information contact Sarah O’Toole – Antigonish Residence Association 902-863-8570.