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Canadian Journal of Urban Research



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municipal government, big business, border crossing, urban regimes

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This paper examines the role of one powerful business owner in local government decision-making. Th e paper examines Manuel Moroun’s eff orts to infl uence local government decision-making in Windsor, Ontario. Moroun is the owner of the Ambassador Bridge (the most signifi cant North American border crossing in terms of the volume and value of trade), which connects the cities of Windsor and Detroit. Moroun is currently engaged in an eff ort to build a replacement bridge and prevent the construction of a publicly-controlled bridge that will break the monopoly that his bridge currently enjoys. In this campaign Moroun has sought to infl uence local governments. Th is paper examines these eff orts and the degree of their success in infl uencing the decisions taken by Windsor City Council with respect to the border crossing. Th e paper examines diff erent explanations of Moroun’s infl uence in local politics. Th e conclusions reached are that Moroun is a major player in local politics. He has not however dominated local decision-making and has not enjoyed as much infl uence as in the United States. Windsor City Council has been prepared to oppose his policy goals and have been at least partially successful in these eff orts.