About the program

In Ontario, the government helps fund forest access roads on Crown land.

These forest access roads benefit not only the forest industry, but also many other users including:

  • mining companies
  • tourism operators
  • Aboriginal communities
  • utility and railway companies
  • hunters, anglers, campers, trappers, cottagers
  • the general public

These roads also provide part of the rural infrastructure for emergency preparedness and response.

Funding amount

The provincial government supports the construction and maintenance of forest access roads on Crown forests that serve multi-resource uses by covering:

  • 100% of primary road costs
  • 50% of branch road costs

Since 2005-06, Ontario has provided $605.2 million to construct and maintain forest access roads.

Learn more: The Minister’s Council Report on Forest Sector Competitiveness

Roads eligible for funding

Roads eligible for funding have to be identified as primary or branch forest access roads in:

  • approved Forest Management Plans and Annual Work Schedules
  • be located on Crown land
  • not be limited to only forest industry use.

Primary roads

These roads provide principal access for the management unit, and are constructed, maintained and used as the main road system on the forest management unit.

Primary roads are normally permanent roads, although there may be significant periods of time when specific primary roads are not required for forest management purposes.

Branch roads

These roads branch off existing or new primary or branch roads, providing access to and through areas of operations on a forest management unit.

Whenever a new road is required to provide access to, though, or between, separate areas of operations, the road will be classified as a branch road.

Operational roads

These roads are roads within areas of operations that provide short-term access for harvest, renewal and tending operations.

They are normally not maintained after they are no longer required for forest management purposes. Often they are regenerated to forested land.