Two more court room loses for Moroun brings the NITC closer to reality

DRIC bridge step closer to reality after Moroun loses court challenge

Dave Battagello

A U.S. federal judge has given the green light for the U.S. Coast Guard to grant a permit for the planned $1-billion Detroit River bridge, moving the project one step closer to construction.

Ambassador Bridge owner Matty Moroun was seeking an injunction in a Washington courtroom to stop the Coast Guard from granting the permit in order to protect profits at his own 84-year-old Windsor-Detroit crossing.

But U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer said lawyers for the bridge company failed to show granting a Coast Guard permit for the planned Detroit River international Crossing (DRIC) bridge would cause “irreparable harm” to their business, according to the Detroit Free Press.

“Upon close examination, the court finds that (the bridge owner’s) contentions are unduly speculative and, therefore, insufficient to justify preliminary injunctive relief,” said Collyer in her ruling.

Collyer also ruled it was okay for the Coast Guard to withhold a permit for the Ambassador Bridge’s twin span proposal until Moroun can secure air rights over the City of Detroit’s Riverside Park.

The city has so far refused to sell the park or those rights to Moroun.

A Canadian government official indicated Friday the court decision against Moroun’s challenge is another hurdle cleared in the bid to build a new bridge at North America’s busiest trade corridor.

“Today’s court ruling represents yet another step forward towards the construction of the DRIC bridge,” said Mark Butler, spokesman for Transport Canada.

“The Government of Canada remains committed to the building of a new bridge between Windsor and Detroit as additional capacity is needed along this corridor to support the anticipated growth in border traffic. Free and open trade generates jobs, growth, and long-term prosperity.”

Originally posted by The Windsor Star