Minister Vandal announces investments to help build and improve community infrastructure across the Yukon 

News release

Minister Vandal announces over $1.1 million in funding through CanNor to support projects that help create spaces that strengthen culture and promote arts, health and wellness

February 9, 2023 — Whitehorse, Yukon — Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

 Dramatic landscapes, vibrant First Nations’ cultures, dynamic arts and creative expression – there are many reasons why the Yukon is loved by both residents and visitors alike. At the heart of it all are shared public spaces, which are a vital part of prosperous Yukon communities. The Government of Canada continues to support communities and community-minded organizations to enhance existing public infrastructure and build new amenities for residents and visitors to enjoy.

Today, the Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, Prairies Economic Development Canada (PrairiesCan) and the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor), announced an investment of over $1.1 million for five community-focused projects that improve key gathering spaces, boost local economies and provide residents more space to meet with friends and family. 

The funding, delivered by CanNor, supports upgrades to the Yukon Theatre, the Guild Hall and the Heart of Riverdale Community Centre in Whitehorse as well as the creation and improvement of important outdoor spaces in Beaver Creek and Haines Junction.

These investments represent the Government of Canada’s commitment to supporting businesses and organizations that help foster accessible and culturally-relevant spaces where community can grow and thrive.


“Yukoners cherish the public spaces in their communities. Getting outside, sharing culture and language, and gathering with others in renewed community infrastructure contributes to a high quality of life for everyone. Today's investments will offer people of all ages and abilities more public spaces to enjoy with their friends and family, and continue to make the Yukon an even greater place to live, work, play and visit."

 The Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, PrairiesCan and CanNor 

“With the return of the Available Light Film Festival this week in Whitehorse, Yukoners are once again reminded of the importance of community-focused spaces. Whether we are exploring trails, learning from Elders, enjoying cinema and theatre or discovering fine arts, it is crucial that we have space to safely gather and share these interests, skills and knowledge. The investments announced today, which support projects spanning the territory, represent our government’s commitment to strong, vibrant Yukon communities that are part of a robust and inclusive economic recovery.”

Dr. Brendan Hanley, Member of Parliament for Yukon

“The Yukon is home to a vibrant and growing arts and culture scene. The Government of Yukon is thrilled to be working in partnership with CanNor to support community hubs that allow local artists and audiences to participate in and enjoy a diversity of high quality film, theatre, dance and performance art.”

Ranj Pillai, Yukon Premier and Minister of Economic Development

“Investing in active transportation helps support healthy living and a cleaner, more sustainable future. Paving the Haines Junction Trans Canada Trail makes the outdoor experience more accessible and enjoyable. It also provides pedestrians, runners and cyclists with an attractive and safer mode of travel than the highway which helps reduce carbon emissions as less vehicles will be on the road.”

Nils Clarke, Minister of Environment and Highway and Public Works, Government of Yukon 

“Copper Niisüü  Limited Partnership is excited to work with our Federal partners in being able to provide a gathering space for the community and White River First Nation members. Currently within the community, there isn't such a space available, so having this land developed will allow for unique traditional learning opportunities, potential showcases for local artists and for larger community gatherings and celebrations to be held on White River First Nation's traditional territory.”

Logan Freese, General Manager, Copper Niisüü  Limited Partnership

“In Haines Junction, we are surrounded by so much beauty. With so much to see and do, it is crucial that we have accessible, reliable trail infrastructure to help both residents and visitors explore all that we have to offer. Upgrades to the Pine Lake trail are an important part of making that a reality. With support from partners, the paved and multi-use trail, which travels from the Pine Lake Campground to the village, will contribute to a healthier, happier and more navigable community for generations to come.”  

Bruce Tomlin, Mayor, Municipality of Haines Junction 

“The support the Yukon Film Society has received from CanNor has allowed us to improve the cinema-going experience for Yukoners, upgrade the fire and life safety aspects of the building and improve the operation’s sustainability. The upgraded building will be better-equipped to offer a diverse range of programs and services that support arts, culture and community in the heart of Whitehorse.”

Andrew Connors, Artistic Director, Yukon Film Society

“We are super proud of the work we were able to accomplish with the help of CanNor. The space is bustling more than ever with young artists learning, sharing, and growing, while benefiting from leasehold improvements and new equipment.”

Andrea Simpson-Fowler, Executive Director, Heart of Riverdale Community Centre

“The Guild Society developed the 'Round Back’ festival as a response to limits on indoor social gatherings during the pandemic, and it has since become a charming fixture of the Whitehorse Summer theatre season. With this wonderful support from CanNor and our valued local partners, Whitehorse's most beloved outdoor venue will grow to feature a handsome gabled roof for our stage, as well as all-weather lighting instruments. We know that this great project will contribute to the venue's unique charm for audiences and performing artists alike, and that it will equip it to better serve our artistic community for years to come.”

Brandon Wicke, Guild Society General Manager

Quick facts

  • CanNor is investing over $1.1 million to support five projects that help create spaces that strengthen culture and promote arts, health and wellness across the Yukon.

  • Projects include:

    • Creating an outdoor community gathering space in Beaver Creek 
    • Upgrading the Pine Lake Trail in Haines Junction
    • Refurbishing the Yukon Theatre in Whitehorse
    • Enhancing the Heart of Riverdale Community Centre in Whitehorse 
    • Building an outdoor venue at the Guild Hall Theatre in Whitehorse
  • With a national investment of $500 million over two years, the Canada Community Revitalization Fund supports projects that build new community infrastructure and revitalize existing assets, bring people back to public spaces safely and stimulate local economies.

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Kyle Allen
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Minister of Northern Affairs, PrairiesCan and CanNor

Laura Seeley
Communications Advisor, Yukon

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