Thirteen new initiatives are being added to the Gordie Howe International Bridge Community Benefits Plan. Representing an investment of $2.6 million (CDN), the new initiatives will bring immediate and lasting benefits to the project host communities of Sandwich/west Windsor and Delray/Southwest Detroit.

“The project team has listened to key stakeholders and communities on both sides of the border to ensure we’re continuing to make meaningful investments,” said Charl van Niekerk, CEO, Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority. 

Public consultation undertaken in 2023 helped to identify to current community priorities, including local history and culture, community safety, green initiatives, food security and wellness. A subsequent call for proposals sought submissions in these priority areas. 

The new initiatives include: 

1. Local history and culture

Canadian Initiatives:  

  • Art Windsor-Essex: Arts-based Youth Programming
  • Les Amis Duff-Bâby: Historical Interpretation Enhancements at the Duff-Bâby Mansion

2. Community safety

Canadian Initiatives:  

  • Assumption Cares Community Outreach Programming 
  • United Way Centraide Windsor-Essex County and COOK Up: School Lunch Program

US Initiatives:  

  • Bridging Communities, Inc.: Mobile Wi-Fi and Charging Stations
  • Wayne State University -Center for Urban Studies: AmeriCorps Urban Safety Programming

3. Green initiatives

Canadian Initiatives:  

  • The Summit Centre for Preschool Children with Autism: Green Space Development at Maryvale

US Initiatives: 

  • Graft Living Studios: Unity House Improvements and Programming
  • The Greening of Detroit: Environmental Stewardship Programming

4. Food security

US Initiatives:  

  • Community Health and Social Services (CHASS): Healthy Habits Programming

5. Wellness

US Initiatives:

  • The Detroit River Project International Heritage Camp

Community Capacity Building Summits also will be held in Sandwich and Southwest Detroit for local non-profit and charitable organizations to enhance knowledge of grant writing and reporting and help drive future investment in the host communities.

In addition to the new investments, the project team also confirmed the details of a $1 million partnership with the City of Detroit that will support previously announced trail enhancements. In 2024, new cycling infrastructure will be added to West Jefferson Avenue and Clark Street, facilitating a new connection between the future Gordie Howe International Bridge multi-use path and the City of Detroit’s Joe Louis Greenway trail system. 

We look forward to the positive outcomes these initiatives will bring to the local communities. Learn more about the new investments.

Funding comes as part of the Plan’s Neighbourhood Infrastructure Strategy, a $23 million (CDN) direct community investment on both sides of the border developed through extensive community feedback.  The project team will allocate the remaining $5.5 million in funds over 2024 and 2025. Information will be shared later this year. Stay tuned!