Ontario Highway 93

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Highway 93 shield

Highway 93
Sarah Burke Memorial Highway
Route information
Maintained by the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario
Length: 23.9 km[1] (14.9 mi)
Major junctions
South end:  Highway 400 (near Barrie)
   Highway 400
 Highway 12
North end: 0.2 km north of Highway 12 – Midland
Highway system
Current highways
←  Highway 89   Highway 94  →
Former highways
←  Highway 92    

King's Highway 93, commonly referred to as Highway 93, is a provincially maintained highway in the Canadian province of Ontario. Located entirely within Simcoe County, the highway extends for 23.9 kilometres (14.9 mi) from an interchange with Highway 400 in Springwater, just south of the community of Hillsdale, to an intersection with Highway 12 at the town limits of Midland. The route follows the Penetanguishene Road, an early colonization road which served to connect Lake Simcoe with Georgian Bay, thus providing an overland route from Lake Huron to Lake Ontario via Yonge Street.

Prior to 1997, the highway was nearly twice as long, extending 15 kilometres further south to meet Highway 11 and Highway 400A at Crown Hill, and seven kilometres further north to Penetanguishene. Because the southern leg was only two kilometres east of Highway 400, and the northern segment carried primarily municipal traffic in Penetanguishene and Midland, both segments were transferred to Simcoe County that year. Both segments continue to be known as Simcoe County Road 93. On March 26, 2014, it was announced that the route would be renamed the Sarah Burke Memorial Highway, in memory of freestyle ski pioneer Sarah Burke.[2]

Route description[edit]

In its current form, Highway 93 begins at an interchange with Highway 400; Exit 121. The highway previously continued south of there to downtown Barrie, but this is now Simcoe County Highway 93. From Highway 400, the route meanders north along the old Penetanguishene Road through Simcoe County. It bisects the community of Hillsdale and skirts the eastern shoreline of Orr Lake. In the community of Waverley, the route encounters the northern terminus of former Highway 27, now Simcoe County Road 27.[3]

Highway 93 at Wyebridge

North of Waverley, the highway continues to meander north towards Georgian Bay, departing from the old Penetanguishene Road at Mertz's Corner. The route curves around the western side of a large marsh before entering the community of Wyebridge, where it crosses the Wye River. Several kilometres north of Wyebridge, Highway 93 ends southwest of Midland at Highway 12; the two share northern termini. It once continued north into Penetanguishene, ending at the shoreline of Penetanguishene Harbour.[3]

History[edit]

Highway 93, as well as its former southern extension to Barrie, follows the Penetanguishene Road. This road was built between 1814–15, from the north side of Kempenfelt Bay (east of Barrie), to the townsite and Naval establishment at Penetanguishene; it was the first road constructed in what is now Simcoe County.

Highway 93 passed through the community of Dalston until 1997, when the section between Highway 11 and Highway 400 was downloaded to Simcoe County

For several years the Holland River and Lake Simcoe provided the only means of transportation; Holland Landing was the northern terminus of Yonge Street. The military route to Georgian Bay prior to, and during the war of 1812, crossed Lake Simcoe to the head of Kempenfelt Bay, then by the Nine Mile Portage to Willow Creek and the Nottawasaga River. The Penetanguishene Military Post was started before the war, however, lacking a suitable overland transport route, passage from York to Lake Huron continued via the Nottawasaga. The Penetanguishene Road replaced this route when the Naval Establishment was opened in 1817.[4]

The route for the road was surveyed in 1808 by Samuel Wilmot. After the British captured Fort Michilimackinac in the War of 1812, the need to supply the captured fort created a need for ships to be built on Lake Huron, which in turn meant that an effective supply route needed to be cut. The decision was made to cut the road in November 1814 by General Gordon Drummond. It was completed before the following spring. Following the war, the surrounding land was purchased from the Chippeway and the road opened for settlement. It was treated specially by the crown land office in that the strategic value of the route to the naval base led to the road being preferred for military settlers. Large numbers of soldiers who had served in Canada or in other parts throughout the British Empire were settled on the road and in the vicinity of Penetanguishene. Pensioners from Chelsea Hospital could be sent here. Many of the commuted pensioners were reduced to a state of extreme poverty.[4]

In 1824, construction began on a new road connecting Yonge Street at Holland Landing with the Pentanguishene Road. Completed in 1827 to Kempenfelt Bay, it was also called Penetanguishene Road, but was later renamed Yonge Street. This portion of the Penetanguishene Road became a part of Highway 11 in 1920.[4]

Major intersections[edit]

The following table lists the major junctions along Highway 93, as noted by the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario.[1] The entire route is located in Simcoe County.[3] 

Location km[1] Mile Destinations Notes
Barrie −15.3  Highway 11 / Highway 400A – Toronto Decommissioned in 1997
Springwater 0.0 0.0  Highway 400 Southern terminus of Highway 93; road continues as Simcoe County Highway 93
Waverley 12.7 7.9  County Road 27 south – Elmvale
County Road 23 east – Coldwater
Formerly Highway 27
Midland 23.9 14.9  Highway 12 south – Orillia, Coldwater Northern terminus of Highway 93 and Highway 12; Road continues as Simcoe County Road 93
Penetanguishene 30.5 19.0 Robert Street Decommissioned in 1997
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
  •       Closed/former

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (2008). "Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT) counts". Government of Ontario. Retrieved December 21, 2010. 
  2. ^ The Canadian Press (March 26, 2014). "Province renaming Hwy. 93 to Sarah Burke Memorial Highway". CTV Barrie News. Retrieved March 27, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c Peter Heiler (2010). Ontario Back Road Atlas (Map). Cartography by MapArt. p. 51, section X28–B30. ISBN 978-1-55198-226-7.
  4. ^ a b c A History of Simcoe County, (1909) by Andrew F Hunter. Volume 1