McIntyre Creek road ruled out

Whitehorse is moving ahead with plans to develop the Porter Creek D subdivision, but it won't be building a road across McIntyre Creek any time soon.

Whitehorse is moving ahead with plans to develop the Porter Creek D subdivision, but it won’t be building a road across McIntyre Creek any time soon.

Originally, planners were looking to connect Pine Street to the Alaska Highway by building a bridge over the creek.

With the new Whistle Bend subdivision potentially bringing 8,000 more people to the area, the city wanted a way to ease traffic congestion.

But now, based on the results of an updated traffic study, planners say the road isn’t needed – at least not until the city’s population reaches 48,000 people, said city planner Kinden Kosick.

With Whistle Bend’s large commercial core, the hope is that a portion of its residents will be able to work where they live.

“It’s designed to be a complete community,” said Kosick. “We want to provide that opportunity for people to live close to where they’re working to try to reduce the number of people that are coming downtown.”

Not building the road is likely to cause traffic delays, but not anything significant, he said.

“We’re talking five extra minutes,” said Kosick.

With the road now off the table, environmental groups, which have long opposed Porter Creek D, have a reason to celebrate.

“The road across McIntyre Creek was one of our big concerns,” said Christina Macdonald, wildlife coordinator for the Yukon Conservation Society.

When she found out last week that the city had dropped its plans for the road, she was floored.

“I couldn’t believe my eyes for a minute,” she said. “When I spread the news around the office we all cheered.

“There’s not a lot of victories in this job so when there are, we do celebrate them.”

The battle over the road may be over, but the conservation society still has a fight on its hands.

It remains opposed to any residential development near McIntyre Creek. It’s a position that has a lot of public support, said Macdonald.

“The city has been trying to move Porter Creek D along for many years, and each time they do, people continue to fight it, so I think that’s certainly an indication of what people want for that area,” she said.

The conservation society wants to see McIntyre Creek preserved and managed for both recreation and wildlife. The city, meanwhile, still plans to push ahead with the new Porter Creek neighbourhood.

In December, council approved a $419,617 contract with design firm HB Lanarc to do the planning and pre-engineering work for the project. That work is likely to begin this fall.

Conservationists are already hard at work building their case for killing Porter Creek D.

“Given that there are twice as many lots available now as there were this time last year, the tank farm is now seriously being considered for development, and with the mining boom slowing, we’re questioning whether we even need Porter Creek D,” said Macdonald.

While the city is starting to see some improvement on the housing front, it wouldn’t take much to stymie that progress, said Kosick.

“Over the last few years we had a housing shortage, and part of that was because … when that population spike hit, there were essentially no plans ready,” he said. “There still is a chance that it might not go through, but we want to have a plan on the shelf anyway.”

Contact Josh Kerr at

Just Posted

Willow Brewster, a paramedic helping in the COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre, holds a swab used for the COVID-19 test moments before using it on Nov. 24. The Yukon government is reopening the drive-thru option on June 18. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Drive-up COVID-19 testing opening June 18 in Whitehorse

The drive-up testing will be open from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. everyday and increase testing capacity by 33 spots

A draft plan has been released by the Dawson Regional Use Planning commission on June 15. Julien Gignac/Yukon News
Draft plan released by the Dawson Regional Land Use Planning Commission

Dawson Regional Land Use Commission releases draft plan, Government of Yukon withdraws additional lands from mineral staking in the planning region

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Let them live in trailers

“I found Rome a city of bricks and left it a city… Continue reading


Wyatt’s World for June 18, 2021.… Continue reading

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Yukon News file)
Yukon logs nine new COVID-19 cases, 54 active cases

More CEMA enforcement officers have been recruited, officials say

Whitehorse City Hall (Yukon News file)
City news, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council at its June 14 meeting

Murray Arsenault sits in the drivers seat of his 1975 Bricklin SV1 in Whitehorse on June 16. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Bringing the 1975 Bricklin north

Murray Arsenault remembers his dad’s Bricklin, while now driving his own

A presumptive COVID case was found at Seabridge Gold’s 3 Aces project. (file photo)
Presumptive COVID-19 case reported at mine in southeast Yukon

A rapid antigen rest found a presumptive COVID case on an incoming individual arriving at the 3Aces project

Jonathan Antoine/Cabin Radio
Flooding in Fort Simpson on May 8.
Fort Simpson asked for military help. Two people showed up.

FORT SIMPSON—Residents of a flooded Northwest Territories village expected a helping hand… Continue reading

A woman was rescued from the Pioneer Ridge Trail in Alaska on June 16. (Photo courtesy/AllTrails)
Alaska hiker chased off trail by bears flags down help

ANCHORAGE (AP)—An Alaska hiker who reported needing help following bear encounters on… Continue reading

Two participants cross the finish line at the City of Whitehorse Kids Triathlon on June 12 with Mayor Dan Curtis on hand to present medals. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
2021 Kids’ Triathlon draws 76 young athletes

Youth ages five to 14 swim, run and bike their way to finish line

NDP MP Mumilaaq Qaqqaq rises in the House of Commons, in Ottawa on May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘Unacceptable’ that Inuk MP felt unsafe in House of Commons, Miller says

OTTAWA—It’s a “sad reflection” on Canada that an Inuk MP feels she’s… Continue reading

Lily Witten performs her Canadian Nationals beam routine on June 14. John Tonin/Yukon News
Three Yukon gymnasts break 20-year Nationals absence

Bianca Berko-Malvasio, Maude Molgat and Lily Witten competed at the Canadian Nationals – the first time in 20 years the Yukon’s been represented at the meet

Most Read