The southbound lanes of Highway 75 from Ste. Agathe to Morris will be rebuilt next year.

That announcement was made Wednesday morning by Manitoba Infrastructure Minister Doyle Piwniuk. The Manitoba government is investing more than $61 million in order to improve the efficiency of Canada's international and inter-provincial trade flows. 

Work will include 27.7 kilometres of surface reconstruction, as well as shoulder, drainage and intersection improvements. The surface will be reconstructed using concrete pavement. 

Piwniuk says the existing pavement from Provincial Road (PR) 205 to PR 305 was constructed in 1988, while the existing pavement from Highway 23 to PR 205 was done three years later. He notes despite ongoing maintenance, the pavement has now deteriorated to the point where full reconstruction is required.

The work will be tendered as two separate projects. One of those projects includes reconstructing the southbound lanes from PR 205 to Highway 23 at an estimated cost of $29 million. The other project includes reconstructing the southbound lanes from PR 205 to PR 305, at an estimated cost of $32.8 million.

Piwniuk says the province plans to advertise tenders for the two projects in the spring of 2023. He notes both projects will then begin in spring and are expected to be wrapped up sometime in fall of 2023. By splitting the work into two projects, Piwniuk says it will allow two different companies to potentially do the work at the same time.

According to Piwniuk, this will also provide opportunity to assess the highway from Ste. Agathe to Morris in order to determine whether larger culverts are needed or even bridges to replace those culverts. 

"This is where we are doing assessments of all the losses that happened this past spring," adds Piwniuk, referring to the spring flood of 2022. "We always learn from the past and we're able to build our infrastructure to meet future climate situations."

Meanwhile, Piwniuk says the technology today is much different from when the existing highway was built in the late '80s and early '90s. He notes they will be putting in a better base and treating this as though they were constructing a brand new highway. 

"Much like if anybody has been down to Fargo this year, they have done one of the projects there for 16 to 17 miles," he explains. "And that will be much what we're doing next year."

He adds the new highway will be more durable, matching I-29 in the United States. 

Dignitaries at Wednesday's announcement.Left to right: Doyle Piwniuk, Aaron Dolyniuk, Shane Pelletier, Ralph Groening, Ted Falk, Blaine Pedersen and Josh Guenter