Long-awaited twinning of Highway 17 moving ahead

After a decade of discussions, Highway 17 is finally going to be twinned.

The stretch of highway running from the Manitoba border to the Kenora By-Pass will be twinned in three phases.

The first phase is a six-kilometre stretch from the Manitoba border to Gundy Road. It’s part of an ongoing agreement between the Ontario government and Indigenous groups in Kenora.

Read more: Repairs to B.C.’s Coquihalla Highway will take months, especially during winter: province

The second portion is an 8.5-kilometre stretch between Highway 673 and Rush Bay Road. The final stretch run 24 kilometres from Rush Bay Road to the Kenora By-Pass.

Caroline Mulroney, Ontario’s Minister of Transportation, and Greg Rickford, Minister of Indigenous Affairs, Northern Development, Mine, Natural Resources and Forestry and the MPP for Kenora-Rainy River, say the plan is to have shovels in the ground for the first section this coming spring.

Story continues below advertisement

The two ministers signed the agreement for the first portion with Shoal Lake #39 and the second with the Four Winds Partnership, an Indigenous-owned and operated corporation dedicated to providing construction contracting and environmental monitoring services and employing Anishinaabe workers.

Rickford says crews could be on the highway clearing brush and trees as early as Dec. 1, but he wasn’t able to give a firm deadline for any portion of the project’s completion.

Sponsored content