Third Construction Season Underway on the Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway

January 19, 2016
News Releases

INUVIK (January 19, 2015) - The third winter of construction is now underway on the Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway to the Arctic coast in the Northwest Territories. This key piece of transportation infrastructure will create economic growth in the Beaufort Delta region by providing all-weather highway access to Tuktoyaktuk, which is currently only served by ice road, barge, and air.   

This project is delivering numerous socio-economic opportunities in the region by employing up to 600 individuals at the peak of the construction season. The contractor anticipates completing the majority of the earthworks during the third season of embankment construction.

The highway will decrease the cost of living in Tuktoyaktuk by enabling goods to be transported year-round by road, increase opportunities for business development, reduce the cost of accessing onshore and offshore oil and gas opportunities, and strengthen Canada’s sovereignty in the North. The new highway will be the northern-most section of the envisioned Mackenzie Valley Highway, which will connect Canada from coast-to-coast-to-coast. It will be the only public highway to the Arctic Ocean in Canada.

Quick Facts

  • The Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway is a collaborative project of the Government of Canada, the Government of the Northwest Territories, the Hamlet of Tuktoyaktuk, and the Town of Inuvik.
  • The Government of Canada is contributing $200 million towards this project.
  • The Government of the Northwest Territories is contributing $99 million.
  • The total estimated cost of the project is $299-million.
  • The work is being completed using unique construction techniques so that the continuous permafrost remains protected in a frozen and undisturbed state.


“The Government of Canada is proud to support the Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway project, a critical piece of Northern transportation infrastructure that will not only create jobs and economic benefits for Northerners, but also connect communities, support the transportation of goods, and increase the potential for economic development in the Northwest Territories.”

Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament for the Northwest Territories, on behalf of the

Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

“This construction project exemplifies the 18th Legislative Assembly’s priority to invest in NWT transportation infrastructure and workforce development. We are pleased with the contractor’s progress and achievements in training and employing local residents to construct a highway under difficult conditions, unlike any other project in Canada. We continue to anticipate opening the highway in the fall of 2017 according to plan.”

The Honourable Wally Schumann

Minister of Transportation

Minister of Environment and Natural Resources
Government of the Northwest Territories


Press Office
Office of the Minister of Infrastructure
and Communities 


Patricia Russell
Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway Communications
Department of Transportation
Government of the Northwest Territories
867-767-9040 ext. 31003
Follow us on Twitter at @GNWT_DOT


Infrastructure Canada
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154 
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