The Ontario government is taking steps to help improve road safety and traffic flow in Northern Ontario with a 2+1 highway pilot on Highway 11 north of North Bay – a three-lane highway with a centre passing lane that changes direction approximately every two to five kilometres.
“Our government is moving forward with the first-ever 2+1 highway pilot in North America to help make our roads safer,” said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation. “We have heard resounding calls from local stakeholders to move this project forward, and we are delivering as part of our plan to build Ontario. Identifying potential pilot locations for further consideration is a big step forward, as our government continues to improve Ontario’s transportation network, helping people and goods get to where they need to go quickly and safely.”
The province has identified the top two locations for the proposed 2+1 highway pilot:
- Highway 11 from Sand Dam Road to Ellesmere Road (14 kilometres)
- Highway 11 from Highway 64 to Jumping Caribou Lake Road (16 kilometres)
Public and stakeholders can comment on the proposed 2+1 pilot locations on the Ministry of Transportation’s Technical Consultation Portal until January 11, 2022. The province will evaluate comments and announce the final 2+1 pilot locations to advance to preliminary design in January 2022.
“The 2+1 highway project is important for people and businesses across Northern Ontario who rely on our roads and highways every day to get where they need to go,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade, and MPP for Nipissing. “This pilot project along Highway 11 will help address some of the unique transportation challenges experienced by remote communities, including First Nation communities, and will play an important part in strengthening economic growth and job creation in the North.”
The pilot locations were selected based on a site selection criteria report that was posted for comment on the Ministry of Transportation’s Technical Consultation Portal on September 13, 2021, with input from 2+1 Advancement Working Group, which includes representation from Going the Extra Mile for Safety (part of the Temiskaming Shores and Area Chamber of Commerce).
“The City of North Bay would like to thank the Ontario government for moving ahead with this important pilot project to help make highway travel in Ontario safer,” said Al McDonald, Mayor of North Bay. “This is especially important in Northern Ontario where winter conditions can be severe and some major corridors such as Highway 11 north are limited to two lanes.”
Featured image: (Ontario Ministry of Transportation)