Ambassador Bridge owner claims Michigan is costing him toll revenue
on February 21, 2017 at 1:37 PM, updated February 21, 2017 at 1:39 PM
Matty Moroun and his Detroit International Bridge Company claim the state is improperly diverting trucks hauling hazardous cargo from crossing the Ambassador Bridge and cheating the company out of millions in tolls.
The bridge company, which has been at odds with state efforts to build a competing span, the Gordie Howe International Bridge projected to be completed in 2020, claims the state is creating hazardous materials routes that prohibit truckers from crossing the Ambassador Bridge between Detroit and Windsor without the authority to do so.
The claims were made in a federal lawsuit filed Tuesday naming Michigan Department of Transportation Director Kirk T. Steudle as a defendant.
“MDOT’s jurisdiction is limited to state trunkline highways and does not extend to private
property,” says the lawsuit filed by the Mike Cox law firm in Livonia. “The Ambassador Bridge is privately-owned and is not a state trunkline highway.”
The bridge company is asking the court to order MDOT to end any routing related to passage of hazardous materials using the bridge.
Commercia semi crossing tolls can increase to in excess of $75 each way for wide loads and up to $6.75 per axle, based on weight, according to the bridge website.
Moroun’s company has indicated plans to build a new private bridge to run parallel to the Ambassador Bridge.
The nearly 90-year-old Ambassador Bridge would receive upgrades but only be used for emergency travel if a new span were built, planners say.
Moroun purchased Ambassador Bridge in 1979.
Read the full lawsuit: