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In the News: Buffalo State Professor Talks Traffic at Canadian Border Crossing


Joëlle Leclaire, SUNY Buffalo State professor of economics and finance, spoke with Buffalo Business First reporter Lian Bunny about traffic at the Canadian border for a story that ran February 5.

The article, “Even as Border Traffic Picks Up, Pre-Covid Numbers Are Far Off,” suggests that while current border traffic numbers have continued to trend upward from 2021 through 2023, they still lag behind pre-pandemic 2019 levels. Business First analyzed annual Buffalo border crossing data into the U.S. for personal vehicles as well as passenger buses.

“Things are picking up again, and that’s very, very good news for everybody,” said Leclaire, who is a citizen of both the U.S. and Canada. But the trajectory doesn’t look promising for a quick recovery. The pandemic instigated structural shifts in the way people spend their money in terms of retail, real estate, and travel, Leclaire said. And although the U.S. lifted its COVID-19 vaccination requirement for Canadians crossing into the country in May 2023, some people are still cautious about the virus and its shifting variants.