Whitehorse city hall, the city’s new services building and asphalt overlay work all received a nod from the federal government Friday afternoon.
Ottawa will be forking over up to $17.4 million for the three projects, the city, YG and feds announced Friday afternoon.
The territory will be pitching in more than $5.8 million and the city an added $300,000 for the works.
Repaving of more than 22 kilometres of road surface and repainting road markings will take place over the next four years or so thanks to the money, which is expected to reduce the need for repairs down the road.
The services building, under construction off of Range Road, will see the money used to increase energy efficiency.
City hall will see its heating, ventilation, electrical and mechanical systems upgraded to make it more energy efficient as well.
Yukon MP Larry Bagnell, Community Services Minister John Streicker and Mayor Dan Curtis were on hand for the announcement, along with some members of council and city staff.
“What could be more timely to be doing energy efficient projects when Yukoners just learned last week that climate change is hurting us three times more than the world in general?” Bagnell asked.
That was in reference to a federal report released earlier this month. It shows the country is warming at twice the global rate and has resulted in calls for reducing CO2 emissions even further.
Curtis noted it was a long-time coming for work on the city’s downtown-area roads, with Second Avenue being a focus over the years.
“The infrastructure gets pounded down – we have more and more people coming, more and more visitors,” the mayor said, noting that includes domestic traffic too, with buses.
While announcements will be coming down the pike for other projects in Yukon communities, Streicker added, it was important the first one was made about the city’s downtown area, given the level of traffic the streets see.
“It’s nice to see that that first set of dollars is going towards this critical piece of infrastructure,” the minister said, adding the impending carbon tax also makes it a
“As we get into carbon pricing and the carbon rebate comes in, this is an advantage for our municipality because they’ll be spending less on energy and that way they get a leg up,” Streicker said.
The tax is set to hit the territory on July 1.
Friday’s news conference came just over six months out from the next federal election.
It will see Bagnell challenged by the NDP’s Justin Lemphers and Tory Jonas Smith in the hunt for the sole seat to be Yukon’s MP.