Bombardier Settles $75M Housing Deal

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Bombardier Aerospace has agreed to stop blocking a Canadian housing development. Some say this move is a signal the manufacturer doesn't want to be seen as playing politics with city hall over the Toronto Island airport bridge. According to the Toronto Star, Bombardier instructed its lawyers to finalize a settlement with the city over 30 hectares of land near its deHavilland plant. A story in the paper quoted Councilor Howard Moscoe and airline entrepreneur Robert Deluce as saying Bombardier had linked its go-ahead for the project with a city council vote in favor of the bridge to the island airport. During months of nasty debate over the bridge, complete with threats of lawsuits, proponents warned that if Bombardier loses a contract to supply Deluce with planes, it could end up closing its Toronto plant and taking 2,500 jobs out of the city. Bombardier indicated it would agree to a deal -- worth $75 million CAD to the city -- before the council voted against the bridge. The 32-12 vote means the city no longer supports the bridge and that the Canadian government will be asked to change an agreement authorizing it. Moscoe, long involved with the project, said he was pleased with the decision, calling Bombardier an "honorable company." Officials seemed intent on staying on good terms with the company, as Toronto has purchased close to $1 billion worth of subway cars from Bombardier since 1992.