The Atlantic Road Report

Bits and pieces of news collected from around the Atlantic


Forest Access Roads in the Paradise Lake and Bay d’Espoir Highway Areas Being Opened

The Department of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture has made arrangements to open a number of forest access roads in the area of Paradise Lake and Bay d’Espoir Highway (Route 360), so that residents may access their cabins and campers.

The Bay d’Espoir Highway (Route 360) continues to remain open to traffic. However, not all forest access roads or cabins are accessible.

If you are planning to use forest access roads in the vicinity of these fires, please examine the below map to determine whether your cabin or camper is accessible. The map shows closed forest access roads in yellow. The two fires shown in white crosshatch are active forest fire areas and are not accessible. The ‘STOP’ symbols represent the points at which the public may not go any further as they are considered unsafe.

If residents decide to use the newly opened forest access roads, they are asked to proceed cautiously and safely and to be aware that crews continue to address the forest fires in the broader region. 


Mira Gut Bridge Officially Opens

Residents and visitors in the Mira River area no longer have to take a 20-kilometre detour thanks to the completion of the Mira Gut Bridge, a major link in Cape Breton’s road network, which officially opened today, August 5.

“The Mira River area, home to one of Cape Breton Island’s busiest beaches and a scenic ocean drive, now has a safer, uninterrupted transportation link,” said Brian Comer, Minister responsible for the Office of Addictions and Mental Health and MLA for Cape Breton East, on behalf of Kim Masland, Minister of Public Works. “The addition of the sidewalk along the bridge will encourage active transportation, allowing cyclists, walkers, runners and others to safely cross the Mira River.”

The new Mira Gut Bridge is an 80-metre truss bridge with a 6.5-metre vertical clearance to accommodate boats. It cost $6.525 million.

The reopening of the Mira Gut Bridge represents the reconnection of our community and the Marconi Trail. The bridge, while remarkable in its design, is truly beautiful because it also represents the efforts of a community advocating and working together to get to this day. There is a groundswell of joy and gratitude that goes along with every ride over this bridge many of us feel today and will for many to come.Amanda McDougallMayorCape Breton Regional Municipality

Quick Facts:

  • the original Mira Gut Bridge was a swing bridge which opened to accommodate large boats, disrupting road traffic
  • in November 2017, the Mira Gut Bridge was closed because the swing bridge no longer worked properly
  • about 1,000 vehicles crossed the bridge daily


Driver’s license process made easier for Ukrainians

The Province of Prince Edward Island is simplifying the driver’s license exchange process for eligible individuals from Ukraine.

Beginning Monday, August 15, individuals who are exchanging full stage Ukrainian Category B (including BE) passenger vehicle licenses for PEI’s Class 5 license will be able to do so without a written exam or road testing. Commercial class licenses or motorcycle licenses are not eligible for exchange. 

Applicants must provide a valid driver’s license from the reciprocal country and/or a translated copy in French or English of their driver’s license, as well as two documents that show their current address in Prince Edward Island. 

“As a province, we are doing what we can to create a welcoming environment for Ukrainians who are fleeing the Russian invasion of their country. It is important that we make the transition for Ukrainian newcomers as smooth as possible as they settle into their new home.”

– Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Cory Deagle. 

This initiative was made possible by the due diligence processes completed by member jurisdictions of the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, consisting of in-depth analysis of Ukraine’s driver education requirements, testing standards, verification of driver license documents which included reviewing work recently completed between Ukraine and the United Kingdom for this purpose.

Individuals from the Ukraine who have recently started the drivers licensing and testing process can contact the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure’s Highway Safety Division at 902-368-5223 to discuss the new exchange options. 

All new residents and visitors to PEI can drive on their existing license for up to four months before they require a PEI license. Once the exchange process has started the four-month time limit is extended until the process is completed. Depending on which country they are from, new Island residents may be able to simply exchange their foreign license for a driving license in Canada without the need to take road tests or knowledge tests. 

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