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Manitoba trucking group ‘disappointed’ by councilman’s call to reroute trucks

City of Winnipeg Councillor Dan Vandal reportedly wants to re-route trucks in the city without regard to freight efficiency, according to the Manitoba Trucking Association.

The Trucker News Services

9/12/2013

WINNIPEG, Manitoba, Canada — The Manitoba Trucking Association says it “is frustrated and disappointed with recent comments made by City of Winnipeg Councillor Dan Vandal regarding truck routes in the city.”

Winnipeg media sources reported that Councillor Dan Vandal stated: “We have to progress as a city, does anyone other than the trucking association like semi-trailers at Portage and Main?” It was reported Vandal then went on to say, "It's a no-brainer. We have semi-trailers that go down Provencher over the bridge … and then meander onto Portage Avenue. It's time to get rid of the tractor trailers from Portage and Main and Provencher Boulevard."

Terry Shaw, general manager of the trucking lobby responded that, “We were very surprised to again be hearing a call for a truck ban on Provencher. To hear that Councillor Vandal is making comment on an increased ban is even more surprising and, frankly, very disappointing.

“The Manitoba Trucking Association is a solutions-based organization. Our preference is to work in harmony with our elected leaders and other stakeholders towards a mutually agreeable result. We have heard loudly, clearly and regularly that Councillor Vandal doesn’t want trucks on certain vital traffic corridors in Winnipeg, such as Provencher, and now possibly Portage Avenue. Unfortunately, what is noticeably lacking from those statements are any suggestions on reasonable alternative routes.”

Norm Blagden, President of the Manitoba Trucking Association confirms: “Truck traffic naturally gravitates towards the most efficient routes. The questions trucking companies, and the customers they serve, concern themselves with are: Is the route direct? Is it cost effective? And is it safe? If trucking companies were provided with alternative routes to Provencher and/or Portage that better address those basic business needs, then Winnipeg industry wouldn’t be as reliant on them. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case currently.”

The Manitoba Trucking Association estimates the financial burden to Winnipeg industries of banning trucks from Provencher to be almost $600,000 annually.

The Trucker staff can be reached to comment on this article at editor@thetrucker.com.

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