It took dozens of years of lobbying and several years of construction, not to mention some $300 million, but the Inuvik-Tuktoyaktuk Highway is now officially open.
A ceremony held at the Midnight Sun Complex was packed with community members and dignitaries Wednesday, Nov. 16.
The most special federal guest was Governor General Julie Payette, who thought there was something fitting in the name of the road itself.
“Even the name – highway, way to the future and aiming high,” said Payette during her speech to the crowd.

“A road constructed over difficult terrain, mostly at night, at frigid temperatures. Congratulations to the crew, to the engineers and to everyone who participated.”
Payette said it was fitting that the historic road was completed in Canada’s 150th year.

She has been to the Beaufort Delta before and called people of the North resilient survivors.
“More importantly, they have taught us, those who came after, a sense of community and importance of working together in order to make it through,” she said, adding that it’s time those not from the North listen to that message again.
Premier Bob McLeod was glad the vision from the 1960s finally became a reality.
“This is an important day for the Northwest Territories and Canada,” he said. “Today marks the opening of the first highway to connect our nation by road from sea to sea to sea and creates a northern transportation corridor that makes access to the tidewater on the Arctic ocean a reality.”
He said the road is an example of Northerners making their voices heard in Ottawa.
Other speakers congratulated the builders and talked about the importance of such a nation-building project. The road was officially opened with a ribbon-cutting event later in the afternoon.

MORE TO COME LATER

 

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