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October 13, 2005
For immediate release

Communities in Western PEI to Benefit From Infrastructure Projects

Community and Cultural Affairs

Several projects in western Prince Edward Island communities, with a total value of more than $1.4 million, have been announced under the first round of the Canada-Prince Edward Island Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund (MRIF).

“One of the main priorities of the Government of Canada is to improve the quality of life in our cities and communities,” said the Honourable Joe McGuire, Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) and Member of Parliament for Egmont. “This major investment in infrastructure in Western PEI supports sustainable development and creates the foundation for economic opportunities for businesses and residents alike.”

The Community of Northport will retrofit their 50-year-old municipal building to meet current energy efficiency standards and reduce energy consumption by 25 per cent. The project will cost $98,700.

“Upgrading environmental and community infrastructure in West Prince will be a positive development for the health of families, for new investment and for economic growth," said Gail Shea, Minister of Transportation and Public Works and MLA for Tignish-DeBlois. "The Province of PEI is pleased to be a partner in helping get these jobs done in local communities across West Prince."

An investment of $154,250 in Abram-Village will extend the current sewer system and street to provide for additional residential lots. In Wellington, $400,000 will see the extension of the existing sewage collection system along Mount Carmel Road, an area not currently serviced.

Main Street sewer repairs will take place in O’Leary at a cost of $175,330. The Town of Alberton will see $492,730 go toward the domestic wastewater sewer main replacement. Other priority areas under the program include local road improvements, better Internet connections, and projects that promote local culture, recreation and tourism. Under round one of the MRIF Program, the Community of St. Nicholas will undertake renovations to its community centre at a cost of $20,900.

The MRIF Management Committee has endorsed the concept of a project in Summerside which would see the development of a wind farm to decrease the use of fossil fuels and increase renewable wind energy. Following further project development and environmental assessments, the project will require final approvals from the federal and provincial governments before proceeding.

In announcing the MRIF agreement in April 2005, the federal and provincial governments designated one per cent of the funding for municipal capacity building to assist communities to better assess their existing infrastructure and strengthen municipal planning. The Town of Alberton will begin a water supply investigation through a $63,000 project to determine the scope and suitable location of a well field to supply a central water system for the town.

A total of 34 projects with a total value of $14.6 million have been announced to benefit communities across the province. Through the MRIF, more than $54 million will be invested between 2005 and 2012 in infrastructure projects by the Government of Canada, the Government of Prince Edward Island and local governments and organizations. Over the next seven years, this initiative will support renewal, expansion or material enhancement of infrastructure in rural and urban parts of the province.

The Canada-Prince Edward Island Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund is administered by ACOA and the PEI Department of Community and Cultural Affairs. The Federation of PEI Municipalities is represented on the program’s management committee.

Media Contact: Jennifer MacLeod
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