The Ontario government is investing $6 million to help 31 remote First Nation communities and the Town of Moosonee build and maintain 3,170 kilometres of temporary snow and ice roads for the 2020-21 winter season.
This investment is part of a three year funding commitment and will promote economic stability and make it easier for remote communities to bring in essential goods and services, such as food, medical and construction supplies.
“Winter roads are a lifeline for remote communities, as they provide vital connections to all-season roads,” said Greg Rickford, Ontario’s Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines and Minister of Indigenous Affairs. “By providing multi-year funding, our government is reducing the administrative burden, supporting economic development and enabling our northern communities to plan more effectively for upcoming winter roads seasons.”
Temporary winter roads serve over 21,000 Ontarians and provide more affordable transportation options for northern job creators and employers, including the mining industry ̶ a key contributor to the northern economy. Weather permitting, the winter roads network is open from approximately mid-January until the spring thaw.
Ontario is developing regional plans that will help build a better transportation system across the province. The recently released draft transportation plan for Northern Ontario outlines more than 60 actions to expand highways and transit services, create Northern economic opportunities, keep people safe and provide reliable travel options for remote and First Nation communities.
In 2020-21, Ontario is investing $625 million to expand and repair northern highways. These investments are estimated to create or sustain approximately 4,370 direct and indirect construction jobs for the people of Northern Ontario.
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Ontario Making Long-Term Investment in Winter Roads Network