Minister Fortier and Minister Romano announce over $1.3M in Northern Ontario communities to support a strong and inclusive recovery from the pandemic

News release

Cochrane District, Ontario, June 11, 2021— The health and well-being of Northern Ontarians are top priorities for the governments of Canada and Ontario. That is why governments have been taking decisive action to support families, businesses, communities, and Indigenous people and will continue to look ahead to see what more can be done in these unprecedented times. 

Today, the Minister of Middle-Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance, the Honourable Mona Fortier, MPP for Sault Ste. Marie, the Honourable Ross Romano, and the Mayors of Timmins, Kenora, Cochrane, Kapuskasing, Hearst, and Black River-Matheson announced joint funding for 9 local projects in the Districts of Algoma, Cochrane, Kenora, and Timiskaming in Northern Ontario. These projects are designed to help communities install COVID-19 safety measures throughout communities and improve active transportation options.

For example,

  • The City of Timmins will receive $317,820 to extend the pathways along Airplane Road to connect with existing trails and bike lanes. The funding will also be used to retrofit City Hall by installing protective barriers throughout the building and upgrade the meeting room to allow for safe separation of attendees.
  • The Town of Kapuskasing will receive $173,340 to replace and widen deteriorating sidewalks in Riverside Park to allow pedestrians to properly physically distance along the path.
  • The Town of Cochrane will receive $132,990 to build multi-use paths and boardwalks so that residents can have more options along their walking and biking routes.
  • The Town of Kenora will receive $227,771 to upgrade the Kenora Recreation Centre by installing a new ventilation system.

The Government of Canada is investing $1,082,178 toward these projects through the COVID-19 Resilience Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program. The Government of Ontario is contributing $270,544.60 to the projects, for a total investment of over $1.35 million in the region.

The Governments of Canada and Ontario, will continue to collaborate closely to ensure that communities all across Northern Ontario have the support needed to continue fighting the pandemic and keep their families, businesses and communities safe throughout this challenging time. We have your back. 


“As someone who has a strong connection to Northern Ontario, I am happy to join the Mayors from across the region, and the Province of Ontario to make this important announcement. We will continue to collaborate to keep our communities safe through this pandemic as we rollout vaccines. By investing in projects like these, we will create good middle class jobs and build more resilient communities.”

Mona Fortier, Minister of Middle-Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance

“We work better, when we work together.  Essential funding from programs like the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program here in the North reinforces the commitment of both the provincial and federal and governments to protect the health and well-being of individuals and families. As a Northern, I am proud that our government is supporting our northern communities through investments that will build a stronger, healthier and safer Ontario for our families today, and for generations to come.”

Honourable Ross Romano, MPP, Sault Ste. Marie and Ontario’s Minister of Colleges & Universities.

“The Town of Kapuskasing is fortunate to have Riverside Park as a large public green space that provides healthy and active opportunities for our citizens to enjoy, in a safe and healthy environment especially during the pandemic.   Riverside Park is the heart and soul of our community, strategically leading into our Downtown Core and our well-known Circle Street.

The rehabilitation of the sidewalk pathway is long overdue as our lengthy and cold winter seasons have contributed to some deterioration in sections of the sidewalks.  The pathway also fronts our senior housing complexes, public splash pad water park, playground structure and gazebo, and with the assistance of our federal and provincial government, we are able to enhance our active transportation infrastructure to ensure that all users can navigate through Riverside Park and access our downtown core in a safe and accessible manner.  We look forward to the days that festivals and events are permitted so that we can showcase our true northern roots and our the charm of our community.  Kapuskasing is very grateful and acknowledges both our federal and provincial partners for their continued support.”

David Plourde, Mayor of Kapuskasing

“When we think about a healthier and safer Timmins for our residents, we look at opportunities to improve access to our green space and ways that we can encourage more activity,” says Mayor George Pirie. “We have plans to develop pathways, multi-use trails and bike lanes that will connect with our existing network of trails. The work is being carried out by our Cycling Committee and the vision is to ultimately see a multi-use loop created that connects the entire city.

The benefit of an active transportation network is that our residents can then move safely through our community from residential neighbourhoods to retail hubs and connect with our parks and pathways. I would like to thank Minister Scott of the Ministry of Infrastructure on behalf of the Ontario Government and Minister Hajdu of the Ministry of Health on behalf of the Government of Canada for their support.”

George Pirie, Mayor of Timmins 

“The funding received by the City of Kenora for the installation of a dehumidifier at the Kenora Recreation Centre will expand recreation opportunities within our community while triggering operating efficiencies within our Recreation Department and economic opportunities for the municipality.”

Daniel Reynard, Mayor of Kenora

Quick facts

  • To support Canadians and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, a COVID-19 Resilience Infrastructure stream has been added to the over $33-billion Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to help fund pandemic-resilient infrastructure. Existing program streams have also been adapted to include more eligible project categories.

  • Through the COVID-19 Resilience stream, over $3 billion is available to provide provinces and territories with added flexibility to fund quick-start, short term projects.

  • Under the COVID-19 Resilience Infrastructure stream, the federal cost share for public infrastructure projects is 80 per cent in the provinces, and 100 per cent in the territories and for projects intended for Indigenous communities.

  • The Government of Canada has invested over $13.9 billion in more than 3,200 infrastructure projects across Ontario under the Investing in Canada plan.

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Isabella Brisson
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Middle Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance

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