WHITEHORSE—A major project to upgrade about 100 kilometres of road and replace several bridges along the North Klondike Highway is moving forward with multimillion-dollar investments from the federal and Yukon governments.
Ottawa said July 24 it has assigned $118.2 million to help pay for the project, which is scheduled to begin next year and run until 2027. Yukon will contribute $39 million to the road work along the lengthy route that connects Whitehorse to Dawson City, Yukon.
The funding covers upgrades to seven separate stretches of road between the village of Carmacks and the Dempster Highway cutoff, just east of Dawson. Work on these sections will eliminate seasonal load restrictions, helping to make way for more truck traffic. With permafrost thawing, the project will also help increase the highway’s resilience to climate change, Ottawa said.
Three bridges — over McCabe Creek, Moose Creek and Crooked Creek — will also be replaced as part of the $157 million project.
Referencing the high price tag for the work, Ottawa noted infrastructure is costlier in Northern Canada, due to the short construction season, severe climate, vast distances and limited materials and expertise.