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International Bridge traffic down, but revenue is up

Bridge revenue for the first quarter of 2017 was up 3.9 per cent as compared to last year.
Canadian border crossing of the Sault Ste. Marie Internal Bridge. Kenneth Armstrong/SooToday

International Bridge Administration (IBA) has announced that one-way traffic crossings of the International Bridge at Sault Ste. Marie totalled 101,945 for the month of March 2017. This represents a decrease of 4.8 per cent, a difference of 5,096 crossings, as compared to March 2016.

However, bridge revenue for the first quarter of 2017 was up 3.9 per cent as compared to last year. Commercial crossing fares represented 46.6 per cent of the total earned toll revenue of $1.4 million USD.

Traffic for the first quarter of 2017 totalled 283,762 vehicles, decreasing 3.4 per cent, as compared to year-to-date 2016, while total traffic increased 15.6 per cent from February to March. The IBA said the increase is on trend toward normal summer bridge traffic.

Commercial traffic volumes continue to show increased positive growth, increasing 17 per cent from February to March of 2017, which is a 4 per cent gain as compared to the prior year.

The International Bridge operation and maintenance, totally self-funded by toll revenue, has processed 98.7 million bridge crossings since 1962. Bridge operations and maintenance are not subsidized by any state, provincial, or federal government entity.

Bridge operations include the bridge structure, the bridge authority plaza, all maintenance facilities, and all ongoing building support costs and maintenance for the Canada Border Services Agency facility.