The Manitoba government is making a number of investments to improve provincial infrastructure and safeguard the well-being of Manitobans and their communities, according to an announcement by Premier Brian Pallister.
“As Manitoba is now in a position to slowly and carefully restart our economy as we move forward through the COVID-19 pandemic, these investments will help ramp up the construction industry and create opportunities to bring more Manitobans back to work,” said Pallister. “These shovel-worthy infrastructure investments reflect municipal priorities, and will improve the safety and well-being of our communities today and well into the future.”
Pallister revealed which projects will be funded through the $500-million Manitoba Restart Program, which was announced on May 7, 2020 to help boost the provincial economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The economic stimulus package adds an additional $500 million above the $3-billion infrastructure investment in Budget 2020.
Projects selected include pre-existing provincial and municipal priorities, and waste and water projects. The $500 million will be allocated over two years as follows:
- $50 million for the Water Services Board to address the significant backlog of water and sewer projects across Manitoba.
- $230 million earmarked for the provincial share of projects under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP), a cost-sharing, application-based program with the federal government.
- $150 million for asphalt highway resurfacing.
- $65 million for major projects that will improve the safety of Manitoba’s highways.
- $5 million on municipal law enforcement priorities including local jails to alleviate pressure on the Winnipeg Remand Centre.
Pallister noted project goals include increasing clean drinking water, reducing boil water advisories, and advancing clean sewer projects. The province will reveal further details of its prioritized ICIP project applications in the weeks and months ahead as it works with other levels of government and Indigenous partners.
The Manitoba government will use the $230 million set aside for ICIP to leverage additional dollars through federal and municipal government sharing.
Once the federal government approves final ICIP projects, the premier noted the province is prepared to immediately advance funds to municipal partners to allow planning and construction to commence without delay. Other construction projects, such as highways and Water Services Board projects, will be put out to tender in the coming weeks.