8 January 2010
St. Stephen, New Brunswick
St. Stephen, New Brunswick, is the focal point of the busiest international crossing in Atlantic Canada, processing approximately 1.5 million travellers per year and providing access to major cities in New Brunswick and New England. St. Stephen is the linkage between U.S. Routes 1 and 9 in Maine, and Routes 1 and 3 in New Brunswick.
The Government of Canada invested $56.9 million in this new border facility through its Border Infrastructure Fund, Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund and the Canada Border Services Agency.
Prior to opening the new facility, now referred to as the St. Stephen Port of Entry, all commercial traffic was routed through the downtown cores of St. Stephen and Calais, Maine. This new facility allows heavy traffic to bypass more densely populated areas. The new crossing provides for the efficient movement of international freight and eliminates the potential health and safety risks related to hazardous material in residential areas.
To improve the trade corridor, the Government of Canada and the Province of New Brunswick are also upgrading New Brunswick Route 1 to a four-lane divided highway between St. Stephen, Saint John and beyond to connect to the New Brunswick-Nova Scotia border via the Trans-Canada Highway.
The newly constructed highway section is part of a larger project to complete the twinning and rehabilitation of Route 1, the construction of this new border crossing facility as well as a new international bridge between St. Stephen and Calais.
The Border Infrastructure Fund provides financial assistance for infrastructure projects that reduce border congestion, improve the flow of goods and services and expand existing infrastructure.
St. Stephen Port of Entry – Project Timeline
1999: Environmental Assessment with New Brunswick Department of Transportation (NBDOT) and Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT)
2004: Location of the new bridge was established
June 2006: Statement of Requirement/planning for new facility
May/June 2007: Request for Proposal
December 2007: Contract awarded to Bird/Rideau Construction
December 2007: Low-level site preparations
April 2008: Construction of the building
March 2009: Construction of the building completed
June 2009: Bridge construction completed
November 2009: Border crossing fully operational
The new St. Stephen border crossing facility provides improved service to the public and commercial clients. Features include:
• a tertiary examination garage
• a service building and hazardous material storage
• a complete enforcement block, including two holding cells, a secure interview room, a basic interview room and family interview rooms
• documentation rooms and facilities for fingerprinting, breathalyzers, etc.
• a dog handlers’ room and an exterior dog run
• x-ray machines
• contraband detection equipment
• cameras and security system
The total area of all buildings is approximately 3,000m2. The facility consists of two main buildings – one for processing travellers and their goods and one for processing commercial goods. There is a tertiary examination garage and a service building with hazardous material storage.
The buildings meet enhanced environmental standards. Constructed of natural wood products and recycled materials, the facility incorporates a ground source heat pump system that produces zero greenhouse gas emissions. The lobby has a heritage building atmosphere.