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CN to appeal court decision over Thunder Bay bridge repair

Mayor Keith Hobbs calls decision over James Street Swing Bridge “an outrage”
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James Street swing bridge
CN announced it is appealing an Ontario Court of Appeal ruling ordering the railroad to repair and re-open the James Street Swing Bridge to traffic, which has been closed to vehicles and pedestrians, since October, 2013.

Thunder Bay Mayor Keith Hobbs is not mincing words over CN's decision to appeal an order to repair and reopen the James Street bridge to traffic.

“We are beyond disappointed with this move. We are outraged,” he said in a statement on Wednesday.

He added that he was confident the Court of Appeal decision is correct.

The bridge, which links the city to Fort William First Nation, was closed in 2013 due to fire damage.

The James Street bridge is owned, operated, controlled and maintained by CN.

Trains were back crossing the span over the Kaministiquia River within days of the blaze, but CN barricaded the bridge to vehicle and pedestrian traffic citing safety issues around certain structural components.

On June 11, the Ontario Court of Appeal ordered the railroad company repair and re-open the bridge.

He pointed out CN repaired a wooden bridge in Minnesota in 2015 that also caught fire.

“We believe CN is using the legal system to delay the inevitable, and that they are still fully responsible for the bridge,” Hobbs stated. “They will have to reopen it either now, or later. We call upon CN to do the right thing.”