Radio Western Morning News

NEWSCAST - Wednesday, January 9th, 2019

Roger Cumberbatch

Campus News
-  Western plans to reopen the University Drive bridge by March after what would be nearly six months of work
-  After closing on Oct. 18, construction continues this week
-  Major bus routes have detoured from the busy east-west passage between downtown London and campus during the closure. Buses were also detoured in 2016, as the 91-year-old bridge was unsafe for large vehicle traffic
-  The bridge’s bearings, which allow it to flex safely under pressure, are unfit for cold weather, according to two inspections conducted since September. Engineers forecasted some repairs for three years after they finished their work in 2016
- Elizabeth Krische, the department’s associate vice-president, said in an email that the construction costs will be greater than last time, which cost $400,000, but a full estimate has not yet been specified


Local News
-  London’s share of provincial gas tax revenue is jumping four per cent to $10.3 million this year, funding that will help offset the cost of buying new buses and operating the city’s transit system
-  The provincial government announced Tuesday that municipalities across the province will receive a combined $364 million in gas tax funding to support public transit
-  The two cent gas tax formula was factored into calculations for LTC’s 2019 budget, so it won’t impact bus service. And in addition, the commission’s policy is to keep 18 months worth of gas tax revenue in reserves in case the program was ever cancelled
- But if the province scraps the expected increase, it could pose problems for London’s bus rapid transit budget
-  A city’s share of gas tax revenue is based largely on ridership growth, and to a lesser degree on population size. Toronto will receive $185 million this year, and Ottawa will see more than $37 million

Sports
-  In a battle for first place at Alumni Hall this past Saturday afternoon, the Mustangs battled the Brock Badgers in OUA Men’s Basketball                                                                    - Omar Shiddo hit the go-ahead three-point shot with just over 10 seconds remaining, and the Mustangs eked their way to a 80—75 victory
-  The third-year guard had a game high 24 points off an efficient 9 of 17 shooting performance, including four of seven from the land beyond
-  Shiddo may have hit the game winner, but it was front court teammate Julian Walker who was the unsung hero of this contest. The second-year product from Barrie Ontario came up with a number of clutch rebounds leading to second chance opportunities, finished with 21 points and five rebounds
-  Despite getting out rebounded and turning over the ball on five more occasions than the visitors, the Mustangs bench outscored that of the Badgers 16-10
-  The Mustangs will be back at Alumni Hall Friday and Saturday night, where they will host the Algoma Thunderbirds for a pair of contests, both with an 8pm tip-off

-  Mustangs linebacker Nick Vanin was named among the nation’s elite scholar-athletes with his selection as a Top 8 Academic All-Canadian, U Sports officials announced yesterday
-  U Sports student-athletes achieve Academic All-Canadian status by maintaining an average of 80 per cent or better over the academic year while competing for one or more of their university’s varsity teams. One female and one male student-athlete from each of the four U Sports conferences are selected annually to make up the Top 8
-  Vanin balanced playing football for the eventual Vanier Cup championship roster while studying for his Medical Science degree and being active with several community groups
-  A dean’s honor roll student every year of his undergraduate career, he is involved with the Junior Mustangs football club, Women’s Community House and Sexual Assault Centre, Ronald McDonald House and the Andrew Legacy Fundraiser
-  The London, Ont., native also won the U Sports Russ Jackson Award in 2017 for best exemplifying the attributes of academic achievement, football skill, and citizenship. He was the first Western student-athlete to win the prestigious trophy, as well as the school’s first-ever nominee for, first presented in 1986


Weather
-  A snow squall watch is currently in effect for London, Parkhill, and eastern Middlesex County
-  According to Environment Canada, total snowfall accumulations of five to 15 cm will be possible by the time the squalls come to an end Thursday afternoon
- Snow squalls developing off Lake Huron arrived early this morning and will continue into early Thursday, Environment Canada says
-  Environment Canada said snow squall watches are issued when conditions are favourable for the formation of bands of snow that could produce intense accumulating snow or near zero visibilities
-  Today, we are expected to reach a high of -2, with a 70% chance of snow.  Tonight, the mercury drops to -6, and flurries are expected to continue overnight into Thursday 
- Thursday, the high will be -6, but will feel more like -13, with scattered flurries. Thursday night, the temperature will be -9