Tag: niagara falls bridge commission

New GM for Niagara Falls Bridge Commission

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From the Niagara Falls Review:

The Niagara Falls Bridge Commission will have a new general manager, effective May 1.

The board has selected Kenneth Bieger to succeed Lew Holloway as the organization’s next GM. Read More…

Limited construction expected at Niagara Falls bridge crossings this season

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From WBFO News:

Cross-border travelers have more than Canada’s sesquicentennial to celebrate this summer. Canada’s history is going to change recent history on the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission’s three crossings this summer.
Read More…

Bridge commission elects 2017 officers

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From the Niagara Falls Review:

American businessman Russell Quarantello has been elected chairman of the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission, while Canadian accountant John Lopinski has been elected vice chairman.

The commission, which is a bi-national entity that owns and operates the Rainbow, Whirlpool Rapids and Queenston-Lewiston bridges between Canada and the United States, elected its 2017 slate of officers during its recent annual general meeting.

Quarantello was appointed to the commission in March 2012 and lives in Lewiston, N.Y. He serves as the business manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 237. He is a master electrician who has worked for numerous contractors over the years.

Steering in the right direction

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From the Niagara Falls Review:

A Niagara Falls councillor wants to steer visitors in the right … or left direction.

Coun. Wayne Thomson wants the city, the Region, the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission and the Ministry of Transportation to work together to allow motorists who cross the Rainbow Bridge to be able to make left hand turns onto Falls Ave.

As it stands now, motorists leaving the bridge are forced onto Roberts St. and Highway 420.

Fewer Americans coming to Canada

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From the Niagara Falls Review:

Fewer Americans came to visit Canada in October than in September, while the number of Canadians travelling to the United States was up slightly the same month, according to new data from Statistics Canada.

Travel by U. S. residents to Canada fell 2.6% to 1.6 million in October, compared to the previous month. This was the first decline in four months, the agency reported this week.

Travel to the United States by Canadian residents edged up 0.1% to 3.3 million.

By contrast, travel to Canada from destinations other than the United States increased by 3.2% to 332,000 in October.

Travel to Canada by United Kingdom residents -Canada’s largest overseas market – increased by 15.3% to 62,000 trips. Trips to Canada from Germany and Australia also posted double-digit gains.

Two-way cross-border car traffic at Niagara Falls bridges has been steady, said Brent Gallaugher, of the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission.

“Auto traffic is holding its own or is creeping up. We’re not in bad shape there,” said Gallaugher. “Trucking is down.”

HOW TO AVOID THE SUMMER TRAVEL TRAFFIC BLUES

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Here is a press release I received via email from the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission:

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HOW TO AVOID THE SUMMER TRAVEL TRAFFIC BLUES

Niagara Falls Bridge Commission offers tips on how to avoid traffic when crossing one of the three international bridges over the Niagara River

LEWISTON, NEW YORK – Summer is fast approaching and travelers will be utilizing the international bridges along the Niagara River in much greater numbers.  Whether it is to shop, visit tourism destinations, vacation, go to the beach, catch a Bernard Shaw play or take a Sunday drive in a neighboring country, to name just a few, travelers that cross one of the bridges between the US and Canada will want to avoid long delays. If prepared, traffic delays can be minimized using the tools provided by the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission.

For some time now, the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission has provided information on traffic conditions at the Whirlpool, Lewiston-Queenston and Rainbow Bridges.  Before departing for a trip to either side of the border travelers can visit the organization’s website or call its toll free number to find out traffic patterns at all three bridges.

  • Niagarafallsbridges.com provides hourly updates on traffic conditions on the Lewiston-Queenston, Whirlpool and Rainbow Bridges, as well as real time photos of the traffic conditions on the Lewiston-Queenston and Rainbow Bridges.
  • Travelers planning to travel over one of the three Niagara Falls Bridge Commission’s bridges are encouraged to call its toll free number that provides hourly updates of traffic conditions on the three bridges.  The number to call is 1-800-715-6722, press 2 for car traffic info.

The Niagara Falls Bridge Commission also provides exclusive use of the Whirlpool Bridge to travelers with a NEXUS pass.  With travel times over the Whirlpool Bridge averaging less than a minute, NEXUS Pass travelers do not have to worry about traffic when crossing the Niagara River.  In addition, NEXUS travelers using the Whirlpool Bridge currently receive a 28% discount on tolls.  For more information about the NEXUS program please visit niagarafallsbridges.com and click on the NEXUS link on the upper right hand corner.

Representatives from the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission also recommend drivers who are traveling on I-190 in the United States who are on route to cross one of the three bridges to view the electronic traffic overhead message signs for current traffic conditions on the various bridges.  The signs operated by NITTEC receive all traffic information from the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission and the signs are updated very regularly.  Drivers can also tune into 1610 AM, Highway Advisory Radio, on their car radio, which gives traffic conditions on the three bridges operated by the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission.

Travelers who cross the border should also be aware that the U.S. and Canada each have different laws dictating what travelers are allowed to cross the border with and what items need to be declared, such as fruits, plants and duty free items.  For a complete list of what is allowed into each county, travelers should visit either www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca (Canada) or www.cbp.gov (U.S) when crossing into the respective countries.  Each site provides a comprehensive list of what is allowed in each country and what items need to be declared at the customs booth.  Knowing this important information will make traveling across the border quicker and will ensure compliance with the laws.

It is also very important for all travelers to know that as of June 1, 2009 travelers entering the U.S. by land, must provide either a passport, passport card, enhanced driving license, Trusted Traveler Cards (NEXUS, SENTRI, or FAST), State Issued Enhanced Driver’s License (when available) Enhanced Tribal Cards (when available), U.S. Military Identification with Military Travel Orders, U.S. Merchant Mariner Document when traveling in conjunction with official maritime business, Native American Tribal Photo Identification Card or a Form I-872 American Indian Card.  Those that don’t have one of these forms of identification may be denied entrance to the U.S.  US Customs recently reported that 90% of travelers already have the required identification documents so long delays are not anticipated. However, using the available tools and taking advantage of the benefits of the NEXUS program will provide benefits to all travelers.

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About the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission

A Joint Resolution of the 1938 U.S. Congressional Third Session created the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission. The Extra Provincial Corporations Act of the Province of Ontario, Canada licenses the NFBC. Canada and the U.S. are equally represented on the NFBC by an eight-member Board of Commissioners.  Initially established to finance, construct and operate the Rainbow Bridge, the Commission proved sufficiently efficient and effective to assume responsibilities for the Whirlpool Rapids (Lower) and Lewiston-Queenston Bridges.  The NFBC builds and maintains all facilities for Customs and Immigration functions on both sides of the international border. The NFBC is self supportive, largely through user fees (tolls) and private-sector tenant leases. NFBC is federally chartered to conduct international commercial financial transactions and issue federal (U.S.) tax-exempt bonds.

Weak Canadian dollar means paying more at border

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From the Niagara Falls Review:

The prolonged weakness of the Canadian dollar means people paying more to cross the border.

Effective May 15, Canadian tolls for passenger vehicles will be increased to $4.00 Cdn from the current $3.75 rate. The U.S. tolls will remain at $3.25 U.S.

The Niagara Falls Bridge Commission, which operates the Rainbow, Queenston-Lewiston and Whirlpool Rapids border crossings, says the move is not a toll increase, but rather an exchange adjustment, which is “entirely based on U.S. currency and its exchange rate with the Canadian dollar.”

The adjustment will include passenger vehicles using the discounted Canadian Express Pass as well, with the newly adjusted toll being $3.40 Cdn.

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