Council passes bridge resolution

Following the lead of the Border Communities Organization last Thursday, Fort Frances town council passed a resolution at its regular meeting Monday night to petition the provincial and federal governments to investigate doing a feasibility study regarding the purchase of the international bridge here.
Mayor Dan Onichuk gave council an update from last Thursday afternoon’s meeting, noting the Border Communities Organization had decided Fort Frances and International Falls should take the lead in getting their respective governments involved in the process.
He noted that by going this route, the communities will be able to get more information on the bridge, as well as let the higher levels of government, specifically state and provincial, to do an analysis utilizing their own resources and expertise.
Hopefully, said the mayor, some kind of partnership then would come out of that, in which two communities and their respective governments would come together and buy the bridge, and charge tolls only until it’s paid off.
At that time, it would revert to total government control and the toll would be eliminated.
Mayor Onichuk said he feels that if the state and province look at the numbers, such as the initial cost of the bridge, what it costs for upkeep, and what its life expectancy is, they’ll either contribute money towards its purchase or, depending on those numbers, start talking about building another bridge.
“We’re not in any great rush,” he added, noting no broker has been chosen to handle the bridge sale yet and there likely won’t be one retained until early December.