News Release Archive

TRANSPORTATION/PUBLIC WORKS--Cobequid Pass Opens for Traffic
Travelling through the Wentworth Valley changes for the better at
noon Saturday, Nov. 15, when Cobequid Pass opens to traffic after
an unprecedented 19.5-month construction schedule.

"People now have the choice of two safe routes --both beautiful,"
said Don Downe, Minister of Transportation and Public Works.
"Business will have a road that's 16 minutes faster to move goods
and services in and out of the province. You can't beat that."

John Beck, president of Atlantic Highways Corp., the contractor
that built the highway, expressed pride at a job well done. "The
construction crews here did a remarkable job," he said. "Believe
me, it's a great accomplishment to build a highway in under 20
months, and it was done by local crews. I can't say enough about

The $112.9-million Cobequid Pass is an alternative route to a
stretch of highway through the Wentworth Valley where the mix of
cars and trucks was a contributing factor to the high number of
fatalities --more than 50 in the past 10 years. 

Many residents are looking forward to the new road. "Once we get
to Glenholme, the anxiety in our car is intense," said Ken
Giffen, who has property in the Wentworth Valley. "To get to our
place, we had to make a left-hand turn. Seeing those transport
trucks come over the hill behind us was nerve-racking. I'm glad
the government acted."

Cobequid Pass is a four-lane 45-kilometre divided highway. The
project was completed two weeks early and on budget.

Cobequid Pass was constructed under terms of a partnership with
government in which the private sector designs, builds, finances
and operates the highway. Highway maintenance and repair and
private investment of $61 million will be repaid through toll
Cobequid Pass will be toll-free until Monday, Dec. 1, 1997.

Cash toll rates are $3 per car, $2 per truck axle. Vehicles with
the E-Pass transponder pay $1.50 per car, or $1.50 per truck axle
to a maximum of six axles. 


Contact: Susan MacLeod 
         Highway 104 Western Alignment Corp.

         Chris Welner
         Department of Transportation and Public Works

For information on transponders, contact:
         Dean DiMattia
         Atlantic Highways Management Corp.

NOTE TO EDITORS: A backgrounder on the Cobequid Pass is available
by e-mailing or calling 902-424-4492.

sab                    Nov. 14, 1997         11:00 a.m.