Iqaluit chooses Road to Nowhere for new subdivision

Iqaluit's famous "Road to Nowhere" will now go somewhere after city council decided on the location for its next subdivision Tuesday night.

Land parcel expected to accommodate about a decade of housing growth

CBC's Kate McKenna reports from Iqaluit 2:02

Iqaluit’s famous "Road to Nowhere" will now go somewhere after city council decided on the location for its next subdivision Tuesday night.

The new $22-million development will be located on a stretch of the Road to Nowhere the size of 14 football fields.

It was one of two possible locations for the subdivision.

"Currently this one is the cheapest for us to build and yields the longest years, so it'll be about $1.5 million per hectare, whereas the other one, on the road to Apex, would be $1.79 million per hectare and yield [fewer] years," said councillor Kenny Bell.

Not all members of the community are happy with the decision. Bryan Pearson is a longtime resident on the road to Apex, known as Niaqunngusiariaq Road. He said it would make more sense to put the new houses up across the street from him..

He says the Road to Nowhere is too remote and not protected from the elements.

"It's a dangerous place, susceptible to incredibly bad blizzards," he said. "There are no facilities there, and places where people could shelter if the power went out for a couple of days ... which can happen very easily."

Council says in time, both areas will have homes on them. It's just a matter of which one happens first.

"It's not really ‘instead of,’ it's ‘best for now,’" said Bell. "It's up to nine to 12 years that this parcel of land will yield for us. The road to Apex will happen, it's just a matter of time."

One thing is for sure, the city wants to avoid the type of development found in the Plateau subdivision. It wants more single family homes in the new development.

Council's next step is more consultation to decide the size of the lots.

The city will then move forward with designing roads.