Long delays on the Peace Bridge could be a thing of the past

Mar 15, 2013

Long delays on the Peace Bridge could soon be a thing of the past.  As WBFO's Chris Caya reports - a new agreement's in place designed to speed truck traffic across the span. 

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and her Canadian counterpart signed a memorandum of understanding yesterday that allows for the prescreening of U.S. bound trucks in Canada.  

"And I think when you look at this announcement, the announcement last week that we made with the governor about $20-million in improvements to Front Park - this signals a break from the past two-and-a-half decades of no progress at the bridge. So I think it's a good sign for Buffalo," Congressman Brian Higgins.

Higgins said inspecting commercial cargo in Ft. Erie will reduce wait times on the Peace Bridge - and reduce the physical and administrative barriers to crossing the border. Higgins says the program's being rolled out in Washington state - and after a trial period will include the Peace Bridge sometime in 2014.

"And the good thing is we get the benefits of the     demonstration project...without having to endure the mistakes -because Phase one will be used to basically iron out any problems associated with the design of the program. And then we will     implement changes in Phase two," said Higgins.

The South Buffalo Democrat points out the U.S. and Canada are friends and trading partners - and he says the Western New York economy depends on predictable reliable access into and out of Southern Ontario.