If the New Democrats are elected in April, leader Cam Broten has not only promised Prince Albert and region a second bridge but promised its completion in four years.
Broten made the announcement Friday in Prince Albert.
“A second bridge in Prince Albert is a no-brainer,” Broten said. “It’s a matter of safety for this region and northern Saskatchewan, but it will also boost the economy. Prince Albert and the entire north has untapped economic potential – and one of the missing ingredients is a second bridge. New Democrats will build that bridge.”
Broten was skeptical of Wall’s commitment to Prince Albert and region and said a bridge was his party’s priority.
“We’ve had a decade of resource boom … but the money’s only going one way. The Sask. Party simply hasn’t been giving back to Prince Albert or the north,” Broten said.
He argued since Wall’s government didn’t build the bridge during the province’s economic boom, the premier cannot be trusted to now.
Broten said P.A. would not be responsible financially as a second bridge served not only the city, but the entire northern region.
“It would be provincially funded, though we’d be going to the federal government as well looking for input on their side. I think this project pulled a lot of merit. But if you look at the current repairs being done to the existing bridge through the Urban Highway Connector Program that’s funded by the province, I think that same rationale should apply for the (second) bridge,” Broten said.
The Sask. Party was quick to comment on Broten’s promises, taking particular exception to the NDP’s claims Wall has ignored Prince Albert.
The party said Premier Wall committed in 2014 to a part public, part private model to fund a bridge. The province has also spent $7 million maintaining the Diefenbaker Bridge and a commissioned engineering study concluded that the Diefenbaker had a lifespan of 20 to 25 years.