Wednesday, 06 May 2015 15:12

Saskatchewan needs to hit that Highway 4 improvement road

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On Oct, 2012, delegations from Alberta and Saskatchewan met with the Ports to Plains Transportation Group in Regina under the auspices of the Saskatchewan Government led by MLA Laura Ross.
The purpose of the meeting was to join with the states already members of P to P to encourage the development of transportation corridors from the mid states of Mexico north to the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan. 
Alberta was most interested in Highway 41 crossing through the Port of Wild Horse.  Saskatchewan had numerous highways in consideration among them Highway 4.
Highway 4 is the only highway stretching the length of Western Saskatchewan intersecting Highway 1 and the Yellow Head highway. 
Highway 4 has the added benefit of the endorsement as a trade corridor highway of all of the communities along its route as well as the major cities of Saskatoon and Regina and numerous endorsements from communities in the state of Montana.
It was encouraging to see the provincial government appear to take a leading role in working with this important lobby group.
A corridor the length of North America leading into Saskatchewan would bring very real benefits in export and trade opportunities.
It was disheartening to see Highway 4 south of Cadillac voted in the CAA poll as the second worse highway in Saskatchewan.  The province has failed to pursue its advantage with Ports to Plains and seems to have discarded the idea of development of this important trade corridor. Saskatchewan is very dependent on the transportation and export of goods. 
Our province is probably more dependent on trade than any other in Canada. It is hoped that the provincial government will refocus its efforts on this important initiative.
As for our western neighbours? Alberta continues to be a strong member of Ports to Plains with active support from their provincial government. Alberta has sent a delegation this month to accompany those from the western states to Washington to lobby Members of Congress. From all reports, it appears that their entreaties fell on sympathetic ears. 
In addition, the Ports-to-Plains Alliance and Eastern Alberta Trade Corridor leadership created an eastern Alberta workplan in Edmonton, AB on November 10, 2014.
It is not too late for Saskatchewan. 
Ervin Carlier
(Carlier is the Saskatchewan Co-Chair of the North/South Trade Corridor “Crossing the Medicine Line”)   

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