Department of Finance
Symbol of the Government of Canada
Table of Contents - Previous - Next
Immediate Action to Build Infrastructure
Highlights

Budget 2009 accelerates and expands recent historic federal investments in infrastructure with almost $12 billion in new infrastructure stimulus funding over two years.

Investments in Provincial, Territorial and Municipal Infrastructure

Building on previous infrastructure commitments, Budget 2009 invests in a more modern and greener infrastructure by:

  • Establishing a two-year, $4-billion Infrastructure Stimulus Fund that will provide funding to renew infrastructure.
  • Providing $1 billion over five years for the Green Infrastructure Fund to support projects such as sustainable energy.
  • Providing $500 million over two years to build and renew community recreation facilities across Canada.
  • Accelerating up to $1 billion in payments over two years under the Provincial-Territorial Base Funding Initiative to expedite "ready-to-go" infrastructure projects.
  • Providing up to $500 million over the next two years for infrastructure projects in small communities.

Investments in First Nations Infrastructure

Budget 2009 will support investments in First Nations infrastructure by:

  • Providing $515 million over two years for "ready-to-go" First Nations projects in three priority areas: schools, water and critical community services.

Investments in Knowledge Infrastructure

The Government will advance Canada’s knowledge advantage by:

  • Dedicating up to $2 billion to repair, retrofit and expand facilities at post-secondary institutions.
  • Providing $750 million for leading-edge research infrastructure through the Canada Foundation for Innovation.
  • Providing $50 million to the Institute for Quantum Computing in Waterloo, Ontario to build a new world-class research facility.
  • Allocating $87 million over the next two years to maintain or upgrade key Arctic research facilities.
  • Providing $250 million over two years to address deferred maintenance at federal laboratories.
  • Providing $500 million to Canada Health Infoway to encourage the greater use of electronic health records.
  • Providing $225 million over three years to develop and implement a strategy on extending broadband coverage to unserved communities.

Investments in Federal Infrastructure Projects

Budget 2009 will set aside funds to build and renew federal public infrastructure, including:

  • Increasing funding to VIA Rail Canada by $407 million to support improvements to passenger rail services, including higher train frequencies and enhanced on-time performance and speed, particularly in the Montréal–Ottawa–Toronto corridor.
  • Investing $7.9 million for new capital projects of two First Nations railways: the Keewatin Railway Company in Manitoba and the Tshiuetin Rail Transportation in Quebec and Labrador.
  • Providing $72 million over five years to improve railway safety.
  • Providing $130 million to Parks Canada for twinning a section of the Trans-Canada Highway through Banff National Park.
  • Allocating $212 million to renew the Champlain Bridge in Montréal, Canada’s busiest bridge.
  • Providing up to $14.5 million for two bridges at two of the busiest U.S–Canada border crossings: the Blue Water Bridge in Sarnia and the Peace Bridge in Fort Erie.
  • Setting aside up to $42 million for other federal bridges in need of rehabilitation throughout Canada.
  • Providing up to $217 million to accelerate the construction of the Pangnirtung Harbour in Nunavut and repair core small craft harbours across Canada.
  • Allocating $323 million over two years for the restoration of federally owned buildings.
  • Providing $20 million in each of two years to improve the accessibility of federally owned buildings for people with disabilities.
  • Committing $2 million to develop a plan for the future of the historic Manège Militaire in Québec City, destroyed by fire in 2008.
  • Increasing funding by $80 million over the next two years to manage and assess federal contaminated sites, facilitating remediation work totalling $165 million over two years.
  • Providing funding to modernize and expand border service facilities at Prescott, Ontario; and at Huntingdon, Kingsgate, and the Pacific Highway in British Columbia.
  • Supporting the development of aviation security plans, improving operations of the Canadian Air Transportation Security Authority, and implementing a new air passenger assessment system and a new security program for air cargo.

Introduction

The Government is accelerating and expanding recent historic federal investments in infrastructure with almost $12 billion in new infrastructure stimulus funding over two years.

There are two key benefits to taking immediate action.

First, it will provide timely economic stimulus by creating jobs across Canada in the construction, engineering and manufacturing sectors as well as generating significant economic spinoff activity.

Second, these investments will help Canada emerge from this economic crisis with a more modern and greener infrastructure that is the foundation of sustainable long-run economic growth.

The investments will focus on four kinds of infrastructure projects:

  • Provincial, territorial and municipal infrastructure. Budget 2009 will support short-term projects aimed at renewing public infrastructure, including road and sewer upgrades, as well as green infrastructure that contributes to cleaner air, land and water.
  • First Nations infrastructure. Investments will support the construction and renewal of schools, improve access to safe drinking water, and build health care and policing infrastructure in Aboriginal communities.
  • Knowledge infrastructure. Investments will modernize universities and colleges, build world-class research infrastructure, expand health information systems, and improve broadband services in rural Canada.
  • Federal infrastructure. Federal infrastructure will be renewed, providing benefits to Canadians through better passenger rail services, safer bridges and highways, refurbished harbours for small craft and more efficient border crossings.

Investments in Provincial, Territorial and Municipal Infrastructure Projects

Provinces, territories and municipalities manage most of Canada’s public infrastructure, including highways and bridges, local roads, public transit and water systems. They are working with the Government of Canada to participate in a national partnership to help rebuild Canada’s infrastructure and stimulate the economy. The Government is supporting provincial, territorial, and municipal infrastructure by expediting priority projects under the $33-billion Building Canada plan, cutting red tape and providing significant new funding for provincial, territorial and municipal infrastructure projects that will get underway over the next two years.

Building Canada Plan

Announced in Budget 2007, the seven-year, $33-billion Building Canada plan consists of a suite of programs to meet the varying needs of infrastructure projects across Canada:
  • The Gas Tax Fund and an increased rebate in the GST paid by municipalities, which provide predictable, long-term funding for municipalities.
  • The Provincial/Territorial Base Funding initiative, which provides $25 million per year for each province and territory.
  • The Building Canada Fund, which supports infrastructure projects across Canada, both large and small.
  • The Gateways and Border Crossings Fund and the Asia-Pacific Gateway and Corridor Initiative to strengthen trade-related infrastructure.
  • The Public-Private Partnerships (P3) Fund, the first national infrastructure program in Canada dedicated toward public-private partnerships.

Priority Projects

Given current economic circumstances, Canadian governments are actively looking at ways to accelerate the roll-out of anticipated infrastructure projects. Governments have worked together and successfully identified a number of major projects that can be expedited over the next two construction seasons. Funding for those projects will come from the Building Canada Fund. Projects cost-shared with provincial and territorial governments could include:

  • Trans-Canada Highway improvements in Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Summerside Wind Energy in Prince Edward Island
  • Major bridge rehabilitation on the National Highway System in Nova Scotia
  • Fundy Trail Parkway in New Brunswick
  • Road upgrades in the Québec City metropolitan area, and upgrades to water and sewer systems across the province of Quebec.
  • Union Station revitalization in Toronto, Ontario
  • Centreport Project at Inland Port in Winnipeg, Manitoba
  • Highway 39 truck bypass in Estevan, Saskatchewan
  • Telus World of Science in Calgary, Alberta
  • Evergreen transit line in Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Piqqusilirivvik cultural facility in Clyde River, Nunavut
  • City of Yellowknife bypass road in the Northwest Territories
  • Water treatment projects in the Yukon

Accelerating Approval Processes

The Government is also acting to streamline federal approval processes so that more provincial, territorial and municipal projects under the Building Canada plan can start in the upcoming construction season. Currently, infrastructure approval processes are subject to duplication and inefficiencies in administration, leading to unnecessary project delays. The Government will be introducing changes to the federal regulatory framework through legislative, regulatory and administrative actions to drive efficiencies in assessing environmental and other impacts of infrastructure projects without compromising protection of the environment.

Efficiencies will be introduced through legislative amendments to the Navigable Waters Protection Act, which has not been substantially amended since 1886. The proposed amendments reflect the recommendations that were made in June 2008 by the Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities after an exhaustive review of the Act.

In addition, the Government will implement administrative changes to streamline application of the Fisheries Act, and regulatory efficiencies will be pursued for projects subject to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. For example, for projects requiring a federal environmental assessment decision, regulations could allow one environmental assessment process to meet federal and provincial requirements, by agreement with the provinces and territories.

The Government of Canada will work diligently to fulfill the lawful obligation of the federal Crown to consult and, where appropriate, accommodate with respect to Aboriginal rights and title. In addition, the federal government will increase its work with provinces and territories to ensure that their respective obligations are addressed as efficiently as possible.

With these changes, the time needed to provide federal approvals for major projects will be shortened by up to 12 months, which will allow construction to begin more quickly.

New Investments in Provincial, Territorial and Municipal Infrastructure

Budget 2009 announces major new initiatives that will further accelerate and increase the number of provincial, territorial and municipal infrastructure projects. As a result of these investments, the amount of federal funding available to provinces, territories and municipalities for infrastructure projects will hit more than $18 billion over the next two years, three times what was spent over the previous two years.

Green Infrastructure Fund

Targeted investments in green infrastructure can improve the quality of the environment and will lead to a more sustainable economy over the longer term. Green infrastructure includes infrastructure that supports a focus on the creation of sustainable energy. Sustainable energy infrastructure, such as modern energy transmission lines, will contribute to improved air quality and lower carbon emissions.

Budget 2009 provides $1 billion over five years for a Green Infrastructure Fund. Funding will be allocated based on merit to support green infrastructure projects on a cost-shared basis.

Bonus for Community Projects

Infrastructure is essential for sustaining the quality of life of our communities. The $1.1-billion Communities Component of the Building Canada fund provides targeted support to small communities that have unique infrastructure needs. To accelerate the construction of community projects, Budget 2009 provides up to $500 million over the next two years in new funding to the Communities Component to cost-share additional timely and targeted infrastructure projects.

Accelerating Payments Under the Provincial/Territorial Base Funding Initiative

The Provincial/Territorial Base Funding initiative provides $25 million per year in predictable funding to each province and territory. This funding is particularly important to smaller provinces and the three territories, as it helps them meet their basic infrastructure needs.

To expedite infrastructure projects, Budget 2009 is accelerating payments under the Provincial/Territorial Base Funding initiative. The payments planned for the 2011–12, 2012–13 and 2013–14 fiscal years will be made in 2009–10 and 2010–11 to provinces and territories that can demonstrate the ability to put these funds to work quickly. For the next two years, up to $1 billion in additional federal funding will be available for infrastructure projects. This funding is cost-shared with the provinces and territories to maximize investment by all levels of government.

Infrastructure Stimulus Fund

Rehabilitation work is needed to maintain the safety and prolong the economic life of assets that were built decades ago. Many important rehabilitation projects are ready to get underway quickly in the next two years, but lack funding.

Budget 2009 establishes a new $4-billion Infrastructure Stimulus Fund that will provide funding to provincial, territorial and municipal infrastructure rehabilitation projects. Funding will be available for two years for projects that will begin construction during the 2009 and 2010 construction seasons. This initiative will be structured to flow funding and get shovels in the ground quickly. The federal government will approve provincial, territorial and municipal project plans, and will cover up to 50 per cent of eligible project costs. Subject to project readiness and merit, funding will be allocated for projects in provinces and territories based on their population. Should agreements not be reached expeditiously with a province or territory, funding may be used to support the rehabilitation of federal or other infrastructure.

Recreational Infrastructure Canada

There are thousands of community recreational facilities across Canada, including hockey arenas, soccer fields, tennis and basketball courts, and swimming pools. Many of these facilities were built in 1967 to help mark Canada’s Centennial year, and are now in need of upgrading and renewal.

Budget 2009 provides $500 million over two years to support construction of new community recreational facilities and upgrades to existing facilities across Canada. Eligible facilities include recreational facilities owned by municipalities, First Nations, counties, community organizations and other not-for-profit entities. The initiative will support up to 50 per cent of the total cost of eligible projects, with the balance to be provided by provincial and municipal governments, community organizations, and the private sector.

This national initiative is expected to provide local economic stimulus, contribute to a higher quality of community recreational facilities and promote national spirit.

The initiative will be delivered nationally through the three regional development agencies, with transitional measures for newly created agencies, with allocation on the basis of project merit and readiness.

National Recreation Trails

Trails allow Canadians to experience our country’s unrivalled natural environment. The National Trails Coalition is a non-profit association whose member organizations provide stewardship of much of Canada’s trail infrastructure. Budget 2009 provides $25 million to the National Trails Coalition in 2009–10 for a national initiative to create, upgrade and sustain snowmobile and all-terrain-vehicle trails throughout the country over the coming year. The Government’s contribution will be matched by the coalition and its partners, leading to economic activity in communities, and creating a lasting legacy of pristine trails that will benefit Canadians for many years to come.

Public-Private Partnerships

The Government has created a public-private partnership (P3) Crown corporation, PPP Canada Inc., to administer the Public-Private Partnerships Fund and work with the public and private sectors toward encouraging the further development of Canada’s P3 market. PPP Canada Inc. is planning an initial call for applications to the P3 fund in 2009–10. The Government will work with PPP Canada management to ensure that the appropriate legislative and policy frameworks are in place to support the firm’s successful promotion of public-private financing in Canada.

Investments in First Nations Infrastructure

The Government of Canada provides financial support to First Nations to develop and maintain community infrastructure on reserve. This infrastructure is critical for the delivery of basic needs and services to Aboriginal communities.

Budget 2009 will invest $515 million over the next two years for "ready-to-go" First Nations community infrastructure projects. This investment will focus on three priority areas: schools, water and critical community services.

School Construction

Building and renovating schools on reserve generates short-term employment and business opportunities and helps to ensure that educational facilities meet existing and future educational requirements. This will help the Government to meet its commitment to improve on-reserve student retention and graduation rates.

Budget 2009 provides two-year targeted funding of $200 million for the construction of 10 new schools on reserve and three major school renovation projects.

Water and Wastewater Projects

The Government of Canada is committed to working with First Nations to ensure that all First Nations residents have access to safe drinking water. The $330-million, two-year investment announced in Budget 2008 for the Government’s Plan of Action for Drinking Water in First Nations Communities has significantly decreased the number of First Nations with high-risk communal water systems, but more can still be done.

Budget 2009 provides two-year targeted funding of $165 million for the completion of drinking water and wastewater infrastructure projects to address health and safety priorities in 18 First Nations communities across the country.

Critical Community Services Infrastructure

The timely and effective provision of critical community services, such as health care and policing, is highly impacted by the physical conditions under which these services are provided. This is especially true in rural and remote communities.

To help modernize the physical infrastructure that underpins the delivery of these essential services, Budget 2009 invests $150 million over the next two years for the construction and renovation of First Nations critical community services infrastructure. Of this amount:

  • $135 million will be provided over the next two years for the construction and renovation of health services infrastructure for First Nations, including health clinics and nurses’ residences. Over 40 new projects and approximately 230 remediation projects will be completed during the next two years.
  • $15 million will be provided to address the remediation of critical policing infrastructure in some of these communities.

In addition to addressing critical needs, these investments in on-reserve infrastructure will provide an immediate economic benefit by creating employment opportunities, including in remote areas. Together with investments in housing on reserve and in the North, this will contribute to significant improvements to community infrastructure that benefits Aboriginal Canadians.

Investments in Knowledge Infrastructure

Improving Infrastructure at Universities and Colleges

Universities and colleges advance the frontiers of knowledge through research and train highly skilled workers who will contribute to the Canadian economy. Post-secondary institutions, including universities, colleges, and publicly funded polytechnic schools and institutes of technology, have indicated that a major portion of their existing campus infrastructure is at or near the end of its projected life cycle, and often does not adequately meet the needs of today’s research and teaching activities.

Accelerating repairs, maintenance and construction at universities and colleges will provide substantial stimulus in communities across Canada and will help achieve the objectives of the Government’s Science and Technology Strategy by enhancing the research capacity of these institutions and enabling them to attract students and provide a better educational experience for the highly skilled workers of tomorrow.

Budget 2009 will provide up to $2 billion to support deferred maintenance and repair projects at post-secondary institutions. Preference will be given to projects at universities that can improve the quality of research and development at the institution. Projects at colleges will strengthen their ability to deliver advanced knowledge and skills training. For example, funding could support participation in repair, refurbishment, and expansion projects at the College of New Caledonia (British Columbia), Great Plains College (Saskatchewan), Winnipeg Technical College (Manitoba), Durham College of Applied Arts and Technology (Ontario), Algonquin College (Ontario) and New Brunswick Community College (New Brunswick). The funds under this initiative will be managed by Industry Canada, with 70 per cent of the funding dedicated to university infrastructure and the remaining 30 per cent for infrastructure at colleges. Allocation will be based on project merit and readiness. The funds will pay for up to half of project costs, levering an equivalent amount from other partners.

Canada Foundation for Innovation

The Canada Foundation for Innovation is a not-for-profit corporation that supports the modernization of research infrastructure at Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals and other not-for-profit research institutions across Canada. To date, the Government’s contributions, along with other partners, have supported more than 6,000 projects at 120 research institutions across Canada that are creating world-leading research capacity in Canada and developing, attracting and retaining top research talent.

Consistent with its Science and Technology Strategy, the Government is committed to continue providing support for leading-edge research infrastructure through the Canada Foundation for Innovation. The Foundation will develop a strategic plan to guide its activities and future competitions beyond 2010. The plan will be developed in collaboration with the Minister of Industry.

In order to accelerate investments in leading-edge facilities and equipment, Budget 2009 provides $150 million to increase the funding available for meritorious projects in the 2009 Leading Edge and New Initiatives Funds Competition.

In addition, Budget 2009 provides $600 million for future activities of the Foundation, including the launch of one or more new competitions by December 2010 in support of areas of priority identified by the Minister of Industry in consultation with the Canada Foundation for Innovation, and guided by the Foundation’s strategic plan.

Institute for Quantum Computing

The Institute for Quantum Computing is a research institute based at the University of Waterloo campus in Waterloo, Ontario. Its objective is to create a unique environment for physicists, mathematicians, engineers, and computer scientists to advance the fields of quantum information and quantum computation.

Budget 2009 will provide $50 million to the Institute to support the construction and establishment of a new world-class research facility that will contribute to achieving the goals of the Government’s science and technology strategy.

Supporting Canada’s Vision for the North

The Government’s northern strategy aims to strengthen Canada’s sovereignty, advance economic and social development, promote environmental sustainability, and improve governance in the North. In particular, the Government has committed to building a world-class, High Arctic research station to improve our understanding of the northern environment.

Budget 2009 provides Indian and Northern Affairs Canada with $2 million to undertake a feasibility study for the proposed station, which will lever existing research infrastructure by serving as the hub for scientific activity in Canada’s vast and diverse Arctic region.

Budget 2009 also provides Indian and Northern Affairs Canada with up to $85 million over the next two years to invest in maintaining or upgrading key existing Arctic research facilities. Funds will be allocated on a competitive basis to projects that can be completed by March 31, 2011, with a view to providing a near-term economic stimulus while building a strong foundation for Arctic research capacity that supports government priorities.

Modernizing Federal Laboratories

There are about 200 federal laboratories and scientific facilities across Canada. Activities at federal laboratories range from basic research to applied work in support of the Government’s core responsibilities in protecting the health and safety of Canadians.

Budget 2009 provides Public Works and Government Services Canada with $250 million over two years under a Treasury Board-managed process to undertake an accelerated investment program to address deferred maintenance at federal laboratories. Projects must be completed by March 31, 2011 and will focus on laboratories that contribute to core regulatory responsibilities of the Government, such as health and food safety. Funds could also be made available to modernize other laboratories for which a realistic business plan is submitted for the transfer of the facility to a university, business or non-profit organization.

Laboratories where investments could be made under this process include:

  • Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s Dartmouth Laboratory in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.
  • Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s Saint-Hyacinthe Laboratory in Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec.
  • Natural Resources Canada’s Great Lakes Forestry Centre in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.
  • Health Canada’s Manitoba Regional Laboratory in Winnipeg.
  • Fisheries and Oceans’ Salmonid Enhancement Program Facilities throughout British Columbia.

With this measure, the Government will provide a near-term economic stimulus, improve its science and technology capacity in areas where it has regulatory responsibilities, and ultimately contribute to better health and safety outcomes for Canadians.

Canada Health Infoway

An efficient and effective health care system continues to be a top priority for Canadians.

The implementation of health information systems in Canada, often referred to as electronic health records, is a critical element to achieving this goal by enhancing the safety, quality and efficiency of the health care system. Such systems will not only contribute to reducing waste and duplication within the health system, they will also contribute to preventing adverse drug events, improving the management of chronic disease, improving access to care and boosting productivity.

For the last several years, Canada Health Infoway has been working toward the goal of having electronic health records in place across Canada. Infoway’s actions are already translating into real benefits for patients throughout Canada. For example, in Nova Scotia, the shared diagnostic imaging program provides the delivery of digital images of X-rays, MRIs, CT scans and ultrasounds to authorized health practitioners where and when they are needed. Nationally, Infoway estimates that investments in digital diagnostic imaging technology have already increased productivity to a level equivalent to adding more than 500 radiologists to Canada’s health care system. Patients in remote northern communities are now connected with health care professionals in urban centres through telehealth—improving their access to care.

Budget 2009 provides Canada Health Infoway with $500 million to support the goal of having 50 per cent of Canadians with an electronic health record by 2010. In addition, this funding will be used to speed up the implementation of electronic medical record systems for physicians and integrated points of service for hospitals, pharmacies, community care facilities and patients. An electronic medical record system allows doctors and other health care providers to chart patient health information using a computer, thereby avoiding duplication of testing and helping to ensure patient safety and effective treatment.

This $500-million investment will not only enhance the safety, quality and efficiency of the health care system, but will also result in a significant positive contribution to Canada’s economy, including the creation of thousands of sustainable, knowledge-based jobs throughout Canada.

Extending Access to Broadband Services in Rural Communities

Canada was one of the first countries to implement a connectivity agenda geared toward facilitating Internet access to all of its citizens. To this day, Canada remains one of the most connected nations in the world, with the highest broadband connection rate among the G7 countries. However, gaps in access to broadband remain, particularly in rural and remote communities.

The Government is committed to closing the broadband gap in Canada by encouraging the private development of rural broadband infrastructure. Budget 2009 provides $225 million over three years to Industry Canada to develop and implement a strategy on extending broadband coverage to all currently unserved communities beginning in 2009–10.

Investments in Federal Infrastructure Projects

Federal infrastructure accounts for about 5 per cent of public infrastructure in Canada. Some of these assets are in need of rehabilitation and repair. Investments are also needed to increase the effectiveness of federal assets, such as VIA Rail Canada’s passenger rail network and select federal bridges and roads, to ensure more efficient movement of people and goods. By funding must-do repairs and enhancements to federal assets located across the country, Budget 2009 will provide thousands of employment opportunities in communities that have been affected by the economic downturn. These investments will also contribute to Canada’s long-term economic prosperity.

An Improved Rail System

Inter-city passenger rail service is an important mode of transportation in a number of markets in Canada, including in the busy Québec City to Windsor corridor, and for remote locations. Most inter-city passenger rail services are provided by VIA Rail Canada. In 2007, the Government provided $517 million for a medium-term investment plan to address the reliability and integrity of VIA Rail Canada’s operations.

Budget 2009 builds on this investment by providing an additional $407 million on a cash basis to VIA Rail Canada to undertake infrastructure and other capital improvements. Particular emphasis will be placed on adding sections of triple-track at key locations between Montréal and Toronto to permit higher train frequencies and to enhance on-time performance and trip times. For example, these investments will support two additional express trains per day between Montréal and Toronto and reduce trip times by up to 30 minutes, thereby making it possible to travel between these major metropolitan centres in approximately four hours. Trip times between Ottawa and Toronto will also be reduced by up to 30 minutes. Funding will also be used to modernize VIA Rail Canada’s fleet of locomotives and passenger cars, and to upgrade key stations in Toronto, Montréal, Vancouver, Hamilton, Belleville and Windsor.

The Government of Canada also supports a number of remote passenger rail services that are operated by entities other than VIA Rail Canada. Budget 2009 invests $7.9 million for new capital projects of two First Nations railways: the Keewatin Railway Company in Manitoba and Tshiuetin Rail Transportation in Quebec and Labrador.

These railways provide rail services to communities that do not have year-round access to roads. The projects will start in 2009 and include track replacements and repairs as well as the acquisition of new locomotives and rail cars.

Budget 2009 provides $44 million over five years to Transport Canada for rail safety initiatives to enhance its regulatory oversight and enforcement capacity, and conduct research and development projects to advance new safety technologies. Budget 2009 also invests $28 million over five years to enhance the Grade Crossing Improvement Program, which will help save lives by improving safety at public grade crossings across Canada.

Trans-Canada Highway

The Trans-Canada Highway binds Canada together from coast to coast. The Government of Canada provided significant funding toward its construction during the 1950s and the 1960s as a two-lane highway. Since then, a number of sections of the Trans-Canada Highway have been twinned to meet the needs of the travelling public.

The Government of Canada is responsible for portions of the Trans-Canada Highway located within national parks. Work is underway on twinning the segment located within Banff National Park to increase passenger safety and ease traffic flows. Budget 2009 provides $130 million on a cash basis to Parks Canada to complete the last phase of this project, which will consist of twinning a section from Lake Louise Village to the border with British Columbia.

The Government of Canada will also work with the provinces of Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and Manitoba to cost-share the following projects, which would support the twinning of the Trans-Canada Highway:

  • Targeted twinning improvements to a number of segments of Highways 11 and 17 in Northern Ontario.
  • Completion of the twinning of Highway 185 in Quebec.
  • Completion of the Nova Scotia Highway 104 Antigonish Bypass Phase 2 project.
  • Improvements to a 6-kilometre stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway through Headingley, Manitoba.

Funding for these projects would come from existing provincial allocations under the Building Canada plan.

Federal Bridges

Bridges are integral to the efficient movement of people and goods across Canada. Over the past two years, the federal government has invested nearly $150 million in improving the safety and longevity of federal bridges. Budget 2009 builds on these investments and provides funding for the following bridge rehabilitation projects:

  • The Champlain Bridge, Canada’s busiest bridge, will receive $212 million on a cash basis. The Champlain Bridge links traffic going to and from the Island of Montréal and is a key connection for truck traffic heading to or returning from the United States. Rehabilitation work will ensure that the bridge can continue to sustain traffic volumes and provide long-term safety benefits.
  • The Blue Water Bridge in Sarnia and the Peace Bridge in Fort Erie, which are two of the busiest U.S.–Canada border crossings, will receive up to $15 million on a cash basis. These projects will help to reduce traffic congestion and facilitate local border crossings.
  • Other federal bridges in need of rehabilitation—including several in the National Capital Region, the Burlington lift Bridge in Burlington and the LaSalle Causeway in Kingston—will receive up to $42 million on a cash basis.

In addition to creating jobs, accelerating needed repairs and maintaining federal bridges will strengthen the integrity of federal infrastructure and support trade and competitiveness.

Small Craft Harbours

The federal network of core commercial fishing harbours provides safe and functional harbour infrastructure to the commercial fishing industry. Small craft harbours are critical for the industry and the small coastal communities in which the industry resides—approximately 90 per cent of the 64,000 commercial fishers use small craft harbours.

Budget 2009 provides up to $200 million on a cash basis to dredge the approaches and accelerate the repair and maintenance of core commercial fishing harbours across Canada, including core harbours in the Northwest Territories. Budget 2009 also provides up to $17 million on a cash basis to accelerate the construction of the Pangnirtung Harbour in Nunavut.

Accelerating the Repair and Maintenance of Small Craft Harbours

Funding will be used to support the accelerated repair and maintenance of core commercial fishing small craft harbours across the country. Examples include:

  • In British Columbia, $1.9 million for building, float, fire protection, service area and wharf repairs at the Steveston (Gulf and Paramount) Harbour and $300,000 for wharf repairs at the Ladysmith Harbour.
  • In Manitoba, $300,000 for deck repairs at the Victoria Beach Harbour.
  • In Ontario, $750,000 for pier rehabilitation at the Southampton Harbour.
  • In Quebec, $3.6 million for repairs, construction and reconstruction in the following three harbours in the Gaspé region: Étang-du-Nord ($1.3 million), Grosse-Île ($800,000) and Port-Daniel-Est ($1.5 million).
  • In New Brunswick, $4.875 million for Phase 1 of improvements at the Shippagan Harbour.
  • In Nova Scotia, $3.867 million for harbour development at the Lower East Pubnico Harbour.
  • In Newfoundland and Labrador, $1.9 million for wharf construction at the Belleoram Harbour.
  • In Prince Edward Island, $2 million for wharf stabilization and harbour improvements at the Wood Islands Harbour and $1.125 million for wharf construction and shore protection at the Miminegash Harbour.

Federal Buildings

The Government owns a variety of real property assets throughout Canada. These assets include buildings housing federal government departments and federal structures, including the Parliament Buildings.

These assets are aging and their restoration will require important investments over the coming years. Budget 2009 provides $323 million on a cash basis over the next two years for the repair and restoration of federally owned infrastructure. Funding will be used to accelerate repairs to federal buildings across all regions of Canada. A number of these repairs will be conducted quickly and efficiently through private sector partnerships.

Enhancing Accessibility of Federal Buildings

The Government of Canada is committed to ensuring that all Canadians have barrier-free access to government buildings. Budget 2009 provides $20 million on a cash basis in each of the next two years to improve the accessibility of federally owned buildings for Canadians with disabilities. This investment will be used for a number of accessibility improvements, including the installation of tactile signs into federally owned buildings.

Manège Militaire in Québec City

In April 2008, a fire destroyed the Manège Militaire in Québec City. Built in 1887, the drill hall is one of the most important national historic sites in Québec City. Through a consultation process, the Government will seek the input of interested stakeholders on project ideas to ensure its continued contribution to this country’s remarkable landscape. Budget 2009 provides $2 million to Public Works and Government Services Canada to develop a plan for the future of this historic site.

Accelerating Action on Federal Contaminated Sites

Building on existing programming, Budget 2009 provides $81 million over the next two years for program management and additional assessments of federal contaminated sites—contributing to an improved environment as well as economic development and employment opportunities. This funding is expected to enable departments to accelerate $165 million of environmental remediation work on sites covered by the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan in all regions of Canada, which could include, for example, Watson Lake in the Yukon Territory, Fort Nelson Airport in British Columbia, Edmonton International Airport in Alberta, Oshawa Harbour in Ontario and Canadian Forces Goose Bay in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Border Facilities

More than 30,000 commercial trucks cross the Canada–U.S. border every day and 60 per cent of Canada’s international trade crosses the land border, either by rail or road. Canada needs modern border infrastructure to efficiently process this commerce. The Government will invest $80 million on a cash basis to ensure that Canada’s shared border with the United States remains secure and efficient. This funding will modernize and expand border service facilities at Prescott, Ontario and at Huntingdon, Kingsgate, and the Pacific Highway in British Columbia. These investments will reduce the processing time for thorough inspections of commercial shipments. They will also allow the Canada Border Services Agency to improve its infrastructure in northern British Columbia and the Yukon. Combined with investments in the Peace Bridge and Blue Water Bridge, these investments will complement recent and planned investments by the United States on its side of the border. The new American administration is working on an ambitious infrastructure program, which is expected to include new investments in highways, bridges and border facilities. It is vital that Canada and the United States move forward, together to support our integrated economies.

Aviation Security

A secure and efficient aviation system is important to Canadians. The Canadian Air Transportation Security Authority acts as Canada’s front line for a secure aviation system at more than 80 designated airports across Canada, providing consistent and rigorous screening of passengers and baggage. New and enhanced aviation security measures are required to strengthen the security of Canadians; ensure that Canada remains closely aligned with the security measures of its key international partners; and ensure that Canadian airports and air carriers remain competitive internationally.

Budget 2009 provides $282 million over the next two years for measures that will support the development of aviation security plans, improve operations of the Canadian Air Transportation Security Authority, and implement a new passenger assessment system. These measures include new, advanced, internationally compatible screening equipment and other technology and training for the screening workforce to increase levels of security and efficiency. Budget 2009 also provides $14 million in 2009–10 to support the implementation of a new security program for cargo that departs from Canadian airports.

The Air Travellers Security Charge (ATSC) was introduced to provide revenues that are roughly equivalent to expenses for air travel security over time. Cumulative ATSC revenues and expenses for air travel security through 2008–09 are forecast to be roughly in balance. The Government remains committed to the principle of balancing ATSC revenues and expenses for air travel security over time. However, given current economic conditions, the new funding for air travel security that is proposed for 2009–10 will not be financed through increased ATSC rates.

Table 3.7
Immediate Action to Build Infrastructure
  2008–09 2009–10 2010–11 Total
  (millions of dollars)
Investments in Provincial, Territorial and Municipal Infrastructure        
Green Infrastructure Fund   200 200 400
Communities Component of the Building Canada Fund   250 250 500
Accelerating payments under the Provincial/Territorial Base Funding initiative   495 495 989
Infrastructure Stimulus Fund   2,000 2,000 4,000
Recreational Infrastructure Canada   250 250 500
National recreation trails   25   25
   
    3,220 3,195 6,414
Investments in First Nations Infrastructure        
On-reserve infrastructure investments        
  School construction   95 105 200
  Water and wastewater projects   83 83 165
  Critical community services   83 68 150
   
    260 255 515
Investments in Knowledge Infrastructure        
Improving infrastructure at universities and colleges   1,000 1,000 2,000
Canada Foundation for Innovation     50 50
Institute for Quantum Computing   50   50
Arctic research infrastructure   36 51 87
Modernizing federal laboratories   100 150 250
Canada Health Infoway   500   500
Extending access to broadband services        
 in rural communities   100 100 200
   
    1,786 1,351 3,137
Investments in Federal Infrastructure Projects        
An improved rail system   24 33 57
Trans-Canada Highway        
Federal bridges   12 25 37
Small craft harbours   43 57 100
Repair and restoration of federal buildings   57 63 120
Enhancing accessibility of federal buildings   12 12 24
Manège Militaire in Québec City   2   2
Accelerating action on federal contaminated sites   32 49 81
Border facilities        
Aviation security   281 16 296
   
    462 254 716
Total—Immediate Action to Build Infrastructure   5,727 5,055 10,782
Cash Value   6,224 5,605 11,829
         
Provincial contributions 4,532 4,365 8,897
Total stimulus value 10,756 9,970 20,726
Notes: Figures in this table are presented on an accrual basis and therefore, in some cases, will not match the figures contained in the budget text when those are presented on a cash basis. Totals may not add due to rounding.

Table of Contents - Previous - Next