Connecting Link Project Improves Safety in Pickle Lake
A road expansion project in the northern Ontario community of Pickle Lake will have a major impact on the local community.
Pickle Lake is in the midst of a 10-km reconstruction of Pickle Lake Road, which will provide a connecting link to Highway 599 and the local airport. The project includes widening 10.75 kilometres of the roadway to the airport, plus a new 1.3-kilometre stretch of new road connecting to Highway 599.
With the completion of the new 1.3-kilometre portion of the road, trucks delivering goods – including fuel to the airport for transport to more northern communities – will no longer have to travel through downtown Pickle Lake. Prior to this expansion, any traffic heading to the airport had to drive through the centre of town and up a large hill on Koval Street. With Koval Street being a busy residential area and a walking route for children headed to school, it wasn’t ideal having daily, heavy truck traffic in the area.
Pickle Lake’s local airport is a busy spot, as it’s a key drop-off location for the Ministry of Natural Resources, and incoming firefighters arriving for forest fire season. Most of the flights arriving also bring goods to be shipped north.
This project will also have a major impact on resident safety. In 2018, a forest fire blocked Pickle Lake Road, trapping residents from escaping through the only road access point to and from the community. With the new road expansion to Highway 599, residents will have an alternate route to use in the event of an emergency.
In 2024, the final touches will include painting lines on the surface of the roads. With that, the project will be complete.