Like sandpaper: gravel erodes paint on Whitehorse road

Two Mile Hill Road in Whitehorse has multiple lanes running in each direction but it's hard to tell where they are because there's hardly any paint left on the road.

Heavy traffic and winter maintenance quickly wear the lines down to nothing, says city

Gravel erodes paint on Whitehorse road 1:44

When driving Two Mile Hill in Whitehorse you have to use your intuition. 

The road has multiple lanes running in each direction but it's hard to tell where they are because there's hardly any paint left on the asphalt.

The City of Whitehorse says it's because of abrasion. Two Mile Hill is one of the busiest roads in the city and its steep incline requires more gravel in the winter than other roads.

It's like sandpaper: the movement of gravel erodes the paint.

Whitehorse's manager of operations Richard Graham says the city's doing its best.

"We do what we can to keep the lines on the road," he says.   

The city of Whitehorse says it paints the road lines on Two Mile Hill twice annually but they wear off. (Wayne Vallevand/CBC)
 "Unfortunately the winter is long and by sanding the roads and grading the roads and having studded tires and that kind of thing on the roads — it wears."

Graham says the lanes on Two Mile Hill get re-painted twice a year.

Driving by memory

The city plans to have new lane markings painted by the end of June. That will be a relief to some road users including bicycle riders, whose lanes are barely visible.

"As an outsider from out of town, it's a little weird," one driver told the CBC about the lack of painted lines.

It may not be as much of an issue for long-time locals. 

"I know where the lines are," said another driver. "You just know after awhile." 


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