Fluor-ACS partnership to build new bridge and border crossing between USA and Canada


Bridging North America, a partnership between the Fluor Corporation and ACS Infrastructure Canada, has been selected by the Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority (WDBA) as the preferred proponent to design, build, finance, operate and maintain a new bridge linking Canada and the USA.

The WDBA’s Gordie Howe International Bridge project will see the construction of a new bridge and border crossing spanning the Detroit River and connecting Detroit, Michigan in the USA and Windsor, Ontario in Canada. The project will involve linking Interstate 75 and Interstate 96 in Michigan with the new extension of Highway 401 (Rt. Hon. Herb Gray Parkway) in Ontario.

The Fluor-ACS partnership will design and build the project, and when complete, the crossing will be the longest cable-stayed bridge in North America. The scope of the project also includes building new, state-of-the-art ports of entry (POEs) on both the US and Canadian side of the Detroit River, as well as improvements to existing infrastructure in both Michigan and Ontario.

Fluor and ACS will operate and maintain the facility for 30 years to performance standards that will be established by WDBA following completion, which is expected by the end of 2022. Early works on the project will start this summer in advance of financial close, which is set for this autumn. Fluor and ACS Infrastructure Canada led the development phase of the project and will hold the prime contract.

This is the second project in the Windsor-Detroit area where Fluor and ACS have partnered. As two of the leading global engineering, construction and maintenance companies, Fluor and ACS have recently delivered, and are currently operating and maintaining, the Rt. Hon. Herb Gray Parkway in Windsor, Ontario, that will connect to the new Gordie Howe International Bridge.

The new tolled bridge will have an ‘A’ shape, six-lanes and be 1.6 miles (2.5km) long, with a main span of 2,799ft (853m). With traffic crossing the border anticipated to grow from 18,500 vehicles a day in 2016 to 26,500 by 2025, the Gordie Howe International Bridge will provide an orderly flow of people and goods between the two countries.

The new route linking I-75 and I-96 with Highway 401 will also provide an uninterrupted traffic flow, as opposed to the current configuration with the nearby Ambassador Bridge, which connects to city streets on the Canadian side. Once the bridge is completed the WDBA will manage the bridge’s operation, including setting and collecting tolls.

“We are pleased with the selection of our joint venture team to design, build, finance, operate and maintain this once-in-a-generation project,” said Terence Easton, president of Fluor’s infrastructure business.

“We are looking forward to partnering with WDBA to reach financial close later this year and ultimately deliver a durable, long-lasting, landmark bridge with a unique visual presence for the local community and international travelers.”

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).