Whitehorse Daily Star

Keep park road-free, CPAWS urges

The provision for a road through the proposed McIntyre Creek park should be removed from the proposed Official Community Plan (OCP), says the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS).

By Chuck Tobin on June 8, 2022

The provision for a road through the proposed McIntyre Creek park should be removed from the proposed Official Community Plan (OCP), says the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS).

Maegan Elliott, the conservation co-ordinator for CPAWS’ Yukon chapter, said in an interview Monday the area should be maintained as a wilderness park.

“We are just concerned a road would negatively impact the values of the area, the wildlife in the area and other values of the area,” Elliott told the Star.

She said many different wildlife species use the area, and it also serves as a corridor for wildlife moving between Mountainview Drive and the Alaska Highway.

CPAWS, she said, has been watching for the development of a park in the area for quite some time now.

Elliott said a road would have a significant negative impact.

“We were pretty disappointed to see they were still considering a road through the area,” she said.

The city should focus on the development of a park and promoting active transportation through the area, she said.

The city is updating its OCP to guide development out to the year 2040. The plan is currently out for review.

The public is invited to provide input and can complete a survey up to June 12.

Putting a connector road through the area without first dealing with the congestion on the Alaska Highway would be a problem, she said.

Elliott said at 8:30 in the morning, the traffic can be backed up from Two Mile Hill all the way to Rabbit’s Foot Canyon.

Dealing with the current congestion on both the Alaska Highway and Mountainview Drive would be a better approach than building a new road, she said.

Elliott said the city should be promoting active transportation along the creek corridor.

The city should also be working alongside First Nations and Yukon University to establish a park, she said.

Before any road is built through the McIntyre Creek corridor, Elliott said, there would need to be more research and studies conducted.

When a proposal of a road through the area surfaced several years ago, there was substantial opposition from the public.

Comments (11)

Up 4 Down 6

Nathan Living on Jun 11, 2022 at 3:46 pm

Maybe an alternative approach could be paved trails built throughout the McIntyre Creek Park which are open to ATVs and side by sides only.

With the wealth many established people have they have bought these machines but the current Whitehorse trail system is very limited. Why are people who purchased $20,000 recreation vehicles given very limited access to trails in Whitehorse? Why not encourage wildlife viewing from these vehicles?

Paved trails in ESAs and a bridge network crossing McIntyre Creek in several locations would certainly add a lot of enjoyment for people with mobility and fitness limitations.

CPAWS and the YCS have an agenda of environmental protection and the Friends of McIntyre Creek are adamantly opposed to intrusions within riparian areas which can be mitigated by paved trails and bridges. Sure this will be expensive but it could provide an opportunity for older people and those with mobility issues to get out and enjoy nature.

Up 10 Down 2

Betty rwin on Jun 10, 2022 at 3:36 pm

Pave paradise, put up a parking lot.

Up 11 Down 10

Groucho d "North on Jun 10, 2022 at 10:42 am

I would not rule out some kind of road in this potential new park. It may be needed. More access means more users, more users means more opportunties for things to go wrong- like little fires that coud grow to be significant quickly. Make it easy for fire-fighters to go do their jobs. Also, COW, YG or whoever manages this new park will need access to empty the garbage cans that should be put in place to minimize the garbage people will leave behind.
I'd like the anti-development groups to look at the bigger picture for these projects; nobody will want a park of standing dead timber and burned off stumps.

Up 22 Down 14

SM on Jun 9, 2022 at 12:38 pm

I'm not sure if anyone knows but there is already a road through this "park" it just needs to be upgraded. There is also a water and sewer line that runs through the park. Why would we not build a road and lots for housing? Is there a lack of green space in the Yukon? Are there not any other places that wildlife can go through? Animals would have to cross the Alcan anyway to get to the park. Although there is only 11 square kilometers of land per person here so i can see how there no room for a chipmunk... people complain about housing but don't want development? People complain about dirty electricity but don't want a dam built. People want a "green future" but don't want a mine here to provide the materials to build a green future. Seriously backwards, just ban humans from living in the Yukon and it can be a gigantic Yuppie playground.

Up 2 Down 21

Mitch Holder on Jun 9, 2022 at 10:02 am

You put road equipment in there and it is getting stolen or destroyed. Hope you like swimming for your heavy equipment keys and sand in your tanks.

Up 6 Down 12

moe on Jun 8, 2022 at 10:57 pm

Build a non-motorized path that is so nice that it will encourage people to use bicycles, including ebikes. A lot of people have to use cars, but many don't have to. The cost of blasting a road through McIntyre Park would be multiples the cost of a path, and is a lost opportunity. A path is a step in the right direction on several fronts. Give it a try.

Up 20 Down 16

bonanzajoe on Jun 8, 2022 at 9:33 pm

CPAWS, get a real job. One that isn't supported by tax payers dollars.

Up 13 Down 6

Nathan Living on Jun 8, 2022 at 6:28 pm

Another example of the City of Whitehorse being out of step with their park planning initiatives and the many documents including the previous OCP which strongly promote environmental protection.

Up 27 Down 13

dave on Jun 8, 2022 at 3:49 pm

Another terrible idea from a city planner.

Up 28 Down 17

Wilf Carter on Jun 8, 2022 at 2:45 pm

This has been researched to death and it only makes safety sense and wild life can work with it if done right.

Up 32 Down 6

Resident on Jun 8, 2022 at 2:23 pm

Which side of Mountain View do you want to fill in?
How much do you want to pay to expropriate the businesses along Copper and Quartz?

How much of Rabbit's Foot Canyon should we blast to build four lanes?
Hard decisions need to be made. Compromise is required on this one, from all sides.

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