Staff with MTO say they're still waiting for the final design and environmental approvals, before starting to twin the Trans-Canada.

"Once the environmental approval process has been completed and all potential concerns and impacts have been addressed, the ministry will move forward with construction," said Annemarie Piscopo in an email, on behalf of the ministry.

The project received federal and provincial funding in 2009. The first phase would see lanes twinned from the Manitoba border to Hwy 673, the turn-off to Shoal Lake.

"At this time, we are not anticipating impacts on the project’s timeline as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak," Piscopo added in the email.

"The ministry is looking at alternative ways of continuing the consultation process, while following the advice the Chief Medical Officer of Health and the experts from Ontario’s COVID-19 Command Table," the email continued.

In February, Kenora-Rainy River MPP Greg Rickford -- who is also the minister responsible for Northern Development -- joined with Transport Minister Caroline Mulroney, as they signed an agreement with Four First Nations in Treaty 3. At the event, Rickford hoped to see construction begin, after the tendering process was completed and a contract signed.

For more information:

Twinning Trans-Canada a step closer

Four Winds chief talks twinning