Mackinac Bridge Authority Discusses Plans for Tunnel Under Straits of Mackinac

The Mackinac Bridge Authority is meeting to talk about the construction plans for a tunnel.

That tunnel will house a new Enbridge pipeline in the Straits of Mackinac.

It’s their first meeting since the state reached an agreement with Enbridge last month.

The state and Enbridge want the bridge authority’s board to own and oversee the new tunnel. 

It was a packed house for what is clearly a controversial topic.

Prior to this, some board members even expressed their concern that the proposed agreement was thrown on to them without notice.

Thursday, speakers from the state outlined what the tunnel plan and agreement would consist of for the bridge authority.

But they were met with environmental groups, tribal members, and more than 30 public speakers who pleaded the board not to take on the tunnel.

The board will not make a decision Thursday, but Enbridge did send out the following statement: “Enbridge recognizes today’s meeting is the first step to establishing a strong partnership with the Mackinac Bridge Authority.

Enbridge believes working with the Authority is a constructive and logical way to pursue a replacement segment of Line 5 in a tunnel under the Straits of Mackinac.

The time is right to build for the future. This partnership would make a safe pipeline even safer and reflects Enbridge’s steadfast commitment to protecting the Great Lakes while safely meeting Michigan’s energy needs. New infrastructure that connects the peninsulas will continue to put Michigan at the forefront of Great Lakes stewardship and will enhance the region’s economic prosperity through energy security.”