GNWT completes highway improvement projects

News Releases

Yellowknife — November 5, 2020

More than 219 kilometres of highways in the Northwest Territories were improved this summer and fall, including:

·       200 kilometres of chipseal overlay

·       19 kilometres of roadway rehabilitation

·       Four bridge rehabilitation/maintenance projects

·       Pre-engineering work for several culvert replacements and one major culvert repair


Funded by the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) and the Government of Canada’s New Building Canada Plan, the improvement projects help to ensure our communities stay connected and enhance driver safety and comfort. Such projects also create employment and training opportunities for northerners.

In addition to improving the existing highway system, over 85 kilometres of embankment was constructed for the new all-season road to Whatì, which is scheduled to open in fall 2021.

Infrastructure projects will continue to play a significant part in the economic recovery of the Northwest Territories (NWT) post-COVID-19. Not only will these projects inject money into the economy, they will also provide business and employment opportunities for our residents, while delivering the critical infrastructure the NWT needs to provide important programs and services.

The NWT highway system includes 3,873 kilometres of all-weather highways, winter roads, and access roads, four ferries and ice crossings, and over 350 bridge and bridge-culvert stream crossing structures.

The details of next year’s highway improvement projects will be announced at a later date.



“Investments in our transportation infrastructure result in a variety of economic and social benefits for northerners and all Canadians, such as increased driver safety, improved resiliency to climate change, and enhanced intercommunity mobility, which support new business, employment, educational, and health care opportunities for residents.”
- Diane Archie, Minister of Infrastructure


Quick Facts

·       The following projects were completed this construction season:




Highway 1

Chipseal resurfacing.

0 to 70
135 to 170

Trout River Bridge rehabilitation – in progress.


Culvert repair.


Highway 3

Deh Cho Bridge cleaning and electrical lighting maintenance.


Highway rehabilitation, including clearing of trees and bushes in the right-of-way, leveling, and compacting the existing road surface material, and culvert replacements.

240.3 to 256.3

Surface repairs at selected locations.

256 to 332

Material production and stockpiling.

272 and 201

Highway 4

Repairs and rehabilitation including blasting, embankment widening, culvert replacements at selected locations between km 0 and 25 and chipseal overlay.

0 to 46

Highway 5

Chipseal resurfacing.

53 to 96

Completion of new bridge works including chipseal surfacing at the bridge approaches and concrete sealing. Other work includes, site reclamation, and concrete patching on the piers.


Highway 8

Reconstruction work, including embankment widening and the installation of new culverts.

143.6 to 146.6

Pre-engineering work for culvert replacements. Remaining work to be completed next year.

40.1, 147 and 266.1

Highway 10

Bridge maintenance.


Procurement of materials for culvert replacement. Remaining work to be completed next year.


Gravel resurfacing


Bridge Rehabilitation and Replacements


Pre-engineering work was advanced for the following projects:

  • Jean Marie River Bridge
  • Oscar Creek Bridge
  • Hodgson Bridge
  • Axle Handle Bridge-culvert
  • Bouvier River Bridge-culvert


Inuvik Airport Access Road and Hospital Hill Drive

Road reconstruction including embankment widening, culvert replacements, and a chipseal resurfacing.


Dettah Access Road

Chipseal resurfacing.


Rae Access Road

Upgrades, including new driving surface. In progress.


Tlicho All-Season Road

Construction of the new 97-kilometre all-season road to Whatì. The official opening is planned for the fall of 2021.

From Highway 3 to Whatì

Great Bear River Bridge

Engineering and regulatory work for construction of a new two-lane bridge. In progress.

938 (Mackenzie Valley Winter Road)


Related links


For media requests, please contact:

Public Affairs and Communications
Department of Infrastructure

Government of the Northwest Territories