JOHNSTOWN, Ont.–Port of Johnstown officials revealed at an opening ceremony June 26 that its nearly $35 million new wharf and infrastructure renewal project is already attracting new business opportunities that could benefit Eastern Ontario’s economy.
Pat Sayeau, Mayor for the Township of Edwardsburgh Cardinal, Gord Brown, Member of Parliament for Leeds-Grenville; and Grant Crack, Member of Provincial Parliament for Glengarry-Prescott-Russell, were joined by the Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Transport; Steve Clark, Member of Provincial Parliament for Leeds-Grenville; and Madeleine Paquin, President and CEO of Logistec Corporation, to celebrate the completion of the seven-year project with a ceremony and public open house. The opening Blessing was delivered by Dr. Henry Lickers, Environmental Science Officer, Mohawk Council of Akwesasne, who provided invaluable assistance to the project through the First Nations consultation period, said the release.
“The new investments into the Port of Johnstown will transform this multi-modal port into an economic engine for the region. As the revitalization of the Port will substantially increase its capacity to move goods, it will have a tremendous impact on jobs, growth and economic development for the region,” said Minister of Transport, Lisa Raitt.
The revitalization of the Port of Johnstown was made possible thanks to investments of up to $11, 575,412 from each the Government of Canada, the Government of Ontario and the Township of Edwardsburg Cardinal through the Building Canada Fund – Communities Component.
The new marine terminal allows the multi-modal port situated on the St. Lawrence Seaway to handle double the number of ships simultaneously and have an additional 10 acres of lay down space to accommodate different types of cargo. The port is already fielding inquiries for the transportation of cargoes ranging from over-sized machinery to fertilizer and construction-related materials.
The new wharf also ensures that Ontario’s salt mines can continue to transport more than 500,000 metric tons of salt by ship to the port each year. This salt is crucial for de-icing roads in cities and towns in Ontario and Quebec, including Kingston, Ottawa and Cornwall. In 2008, it was identified that the marine infrastructure at the Port of Johnstown was in such poor condition that the facility might have to close, potentially leading to thousands of extra trucks on highway 401 to transport salt cargoes.
“This vital investment puts the Port of Johnstown on the map for new business opportunities. The port is already getting expressions of interest for the transportation of new cargoes on behalf of companies in the energy, agriculture and construction sectors. We believe this expansion will be an economic driver and job creator for not just our Township but the entire Eastern Ontario region and we are thankful to our federal and provincial partners, as well as the hard work of our local stakeholders for making this a reality,” said Pat Sayeau, Mayor of the Township of Edwardsburg Cardinal.
“The revitalization of the Port of Johnstown will help strengthen trade corridors and ensure the efficient transportation of cargo to eastern and western Canadian markets. Our Government is proud to support infrastructure projects like this one that foster economic growth, job creation and long-term prosperity,” said Gord Brown, Member of Parliament for Leeds-Grenville.
“The upgrades to the Port of Johnstown marine terminal will have far-reaching economic impacts for the region. This important transportation hub will pave the way for new business. Our government is modernizing critical infrastructure by making investments like these to help create jobs and strengthen our economy while helping build a stronger rural Ontario,” said Grant Crack, Member of Provincial Parliament for Glengarry-Prescott-Russell.