Thank you, Madam Chair, and thank you for welcoming us here today.
First I should say that I'm the chief operating officer of the WDBA, and I'm accompanied, as you said, by the chief financial and administrative officer.
I want to talk first about the supplementary estimates that you have in front of you. Of the $58.9 million requested through these estimates, $38.7 million is re-profiled operating and capital funds from 2016-17 to 2017-18, and $20.2 million is a transfer from Infrastructure Canada for remediation of the Canadian land. The funding is aligned with our priorities of what we call “early works”, utility relocations on both sides of the border, property acquisitions in Michigan, and the ongoing delivery of the P3—public-private partnership—procurement process.
As the minister said, we are making real progress on the Gordie Howe International Bridge, with more than $350 million in ongoing works at the Canadian and U.S. project sites. These activities include construction of an access road, placement of fill to address soil conditions, construction of stormwater management ponds, and utility relocations. On the U.S. side, these activities include acquisition of properties, environmental site work, and utility relocations.
The Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority is undertaking these preparatory activities on both sides of the Canada-US border now so that our project is ready for our eventual private-sector partner to begin construction as quickly as possible in 2018. I will come back to that.
Our partners at the Michigan Department of Transportation are responsible for US property acquisition and have been actively working with business owners and residents. A year ago, when WDBA last appeared before this committee, the Michigan Department of Transportation had approximately 50% of required property under their control. Today, they have 80%. The Michigan Department of Transportation is adhering to a detailed timeline that will see property available for our eventual private-sector partner when it is needed for construction. I will add that all required Canadian property has been acquired.
We are currently in the second stage of our two-stage procurement process to identify a private-sector partner to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the Gordie Howe International Bridge project.
We have three highly qualified international proponent teams who are currently preparing their proposals in response to the detailed technical and financial requirements we have identified. Next year, we will complete our procurement process as these proposals will be submitted, we will undertake a fair and rigorous evaluation process, a preferred proponent will be named, and we will finalize negotiations. Our private-sector partner will be on-board in September 2018 and construction on the bridge will begin.
Consistent with best practices, our entire process is overseen by an independent fairness monitor who ensures transparency and fairness among the three proponents.
As part of all P3 procurement processes, proponents will submit detailed construction schedules and contract costs as part of their proposals. We look forward to the completion of the procurement process, when we'll be able to present the construction schedule, including the bridge opening date and the contract value of the winning proposal.
In doing all this work, we work daily with Infrastructure Canada, the Michigan governor's office, the Michigan Department of Transportation, the U.S. Federal Highway Administration, and Canadian and U.S. border agencies. We meet regularly with the City of Windsor and the City of Detroit, elected officials, community leaders, business owners, and so on.
We try hard and we devote a lot of energy to listening to our stakeholders. It has been one of my priorities since becoming chief operating officer to meet a wide range of stakeholders and to demonstrate our commitment. In fact, on November 24, we will host our third annual public meeting in Windsor, and we're working on our annual public meeting on the U.S. side shortly thereafter.
As Minister Sohi said, the Government of Canada is committed to building the Gordie Howe International Bridge, and we think this is evidenced by the work we've accomplished so far. We are on track to deliver this priority project.
I thank the honourable members, through you, Madam Chair, for having us here today.