May 3, 1999
IJC Issues Order of Approval for Peace Bridge Expansion
On April 30, 1999, the International Joint Commission (IJC) issued an
Order of Approval for the
proposed expansion of the Peace Bridge over the Niagara River.
In issuing this Order of Approval, the IJC notes that the issues within its jurisdiction, including
potential effects on water levels and flows and potential transboundary environmental effects,
have been adequately addressed.
The IJC has been informed that the new bridge will raise levels upstream in the Niagara River
and on Lake Erie temporarily by less than 10 millimetres (0.4 inches) during construction under
average discharge conditions. It is anticipated that this impact will dissipate within approximately
one year after the cofferdams required for construction are removed and that there will be no
impacts on levels and flows thereafter.
The IJC has also been informed that suitable measures have been developed and will be
implemented during and after construction to avoid, minimize or compensate for adverse
environmental effects of the project, including on fish habitat, water quality, migratory flyways
and concerning ice transport.
The responsibility of the IJC is to address issues related to changes in water levels and flows that
would result from the project in the application submitted to the IJC.
The Order of Approval responds to an application from the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge
Authority received by the IJC on December 9, 1998. The IJC held public hearings in Niagara
Falls, Ontario on January 27 and in Buffalo, New York on January 28 and invited written
Under the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909, the IJC approves certain uses, obstructions and
diversions of boundary waters that would affect the natural level or flow across the boundary.
The original Peace Bridge was approved by the IJC in 1925.