Hwy 46 Hwy 46 Hwy 46   

Ontario Highway 46 Quick Facts:
  • Years in Existence: 1937-1997
  • Current Status: Decommissioned in 1997
  • Current Name: Kawartha Lakes Road 46
  • Location: Central Ontario
  • Counties Served: Kawartha Lakes (Victoria)
  • Towns Served: Woodville
  • Southern Terminus: Hwy 7 - East of Manilla
  • Northern Terminus: Hwy 48 - Bolsover
  • Length in 1993: 25.7 km / 16.0 miles
HWY 46 ROUTE MARKER © Cameron Bevers
King's Highway 46 Sign © Cameron Bevers

History of King's Highway 46:

King's Highway 46 was a minor highway in Victoria County (now known as the City of Kawartha Lakes) which connected Highway 7 near Oakwood with Highway 48 at Bolsover. The highway existed from the 1930s up until the late 1990s, when it was downloaded from the province to the County of Victoria. At one time, Highway 46 also extended northeasterly from Bolsover to Coboconk, via Kirkfield. Highway 46 was significantly reduced in length during the 1970s, when the portion of the route between Bolsover and Coboconk was renumbered as Highway 48.

The history of Highway 46 dates back to 1937, when the Department of Highways of Ontario (DHO) acquired a new King's Highway northwest of Lindsay. A Preliminary Route Plan was prepared in May 1937, which showed the proposed assumption of a road via Woodville, Bolsover, Kirkfield and Coboconk as a new King's Highway. Highway 46 was first assumed into the King's Highway System on August 11, 1937. The new route was approximately 34 miles (55 km) in length and ran from Highway 7 between Manilla and Oakwood northerly to Bolsover and then turned northeasterly to join Highway 35 in Coboconk (See Map). Initially, the highway was gravel surfaced between Woodville and Coboconk. From the Highway 7 Junction to Woodville, Highway 46 was an unimproved earth road at the time as assumption in 1937. A gravel surface was laid along Highway 46 south of Woodville in 1938, in order to create an all-weather route. A bituminous prime surface was laid from the Trent Canal Bridge east of Kirkfield easterly to Coboconk in 1940. Highway 46 was paved from the Highway 7 Junction to Argyle during 1951 and 1952 and from Argyle to Kirkfield in 1956. In 1959, the section of Highway 46 from Kirkfield to the Highway 505 Junction near Victoria Road was paved. In conjunction with this work east of Kirkfield, a new bridge was completed over the Trent-Severn Waterway on an improved alignment. Jurisdiction over the former alignment of Highway 46 at the Trent-Severn Waterway crossing was transferred from the DHO to the municipality, effective April 17, 1965.

As originally established in 1937, the entire route of Highway 46 was under provincial jurisdiction, including the section of the highway which passed through the Village of Woodville. During the 1960s, the DHO transferred jurisdiction over Highway 46 through the built-up portion of Woodville. This transfer included the entire route of Highway 46 through the village centre via King Street. a short section of Agnes Street (150 feet) and a section of Nappadale Street (1,000 feet). This 0.4-mile section of Highway 46 was transferred from the DHO to the Village of Woodville on July 22, 1967 and was subsequently designated as a Municipal Connecting Link.

In the early 1960s, it was decided that a new Provincial Park would be established along the north shores of Balsam Lake. A new alignment for Highway 46 was built further inland a short distance to the north of the proposed park location in order to allow construction of the park to take place. The proposed Balsam Lake Diversion was designated as a King's Highway by an Order-in-Council, effective May 21, 1964. Most of the new Balsam Lake Diversion followed an existing township road known as the Base Line Road, although a portion of the diversion was built on an entirely new alignment where no road had previously existed. A construction contract was awarded in 1964 to build the new Highway 46 Diversion and associated highway improvements from the Highway 505 Junction easterly to the Highway 35 Junction in Coboconk. The new Balsam Lake Diversion was officially opened to traffic on June 28, 1967. It bypassed nearly 6 miles of the original 1937 route of Highway 46 and shortened the highway distance between Kirkfield and Coboconk by nearly 2 miles (See Map). The old Highway 46 alignment along the shores of Balsam Lake is now known as Balsam Lake Road and North Bay Road. The original route of Highway 46 lying within Balsam Lake Provincial Park was legally closed to traffic by an Order-in-Council, effective June 29, 1967. The former highway's route through the park was retained as an internal park access road, although a portion of the old highway adjacent to the beach area was removed altogether. Jurisdiction over Old Highway 46 west of Balsam Lake Provincial Park was transferred from DHO to the Township of Bexley, effective October 7, 1967. The section of Old Highway 46 lying east of the park was transferred to the Township of Bexley, effective July 29, 1967.

In the 1970s, a route renumbering took place which saw a portion of Highway 46 between Bolsover and Coboconk renumbered as an easterly extension of Highway 48. Although the route number change received approval in April 1975, it is believed that the new route numbers did not come into effect until late in the year, following the completion of the realigned Highway 46 & Highway 48 Junction at Bolsover. As a result of these intersection improvements, Highway 48 became the through highway at the junction. Previously, Highway 48 ended at a T-intersection, while Highway 46 continued as the through highway towards Kirkfield. The highway renumbering shortened the length of Highway 46 by 28 km (See Map). Between 1975 and 1997, Highway 46 ended at the Highway 48 Junction in Bolsover. No further changes were made to the route of Highway 46 until the late 1990s.

On March 31, 1997, provincial jurisdiction over the remaining section of Highway 46 between the Highway 7 Junction and the Highway 48 Junction was transferred or "downloaded" to the County of Victoria. The road was briefly known as Victoria County Road 46, but it was renamed as Kawartha Lakes Road 46 after the county was amalgamated as a new municipality in 2001. However, the road is still often referred to as "Highway 46" by motorists. Services are available in Woodville, Kirkfield and in Coboconk. Highway 46 is a rural two-lane highway for its entire length. Unless posted otherwise, the speed limit on Highway 46 is 80 km/h (50 mph). Please visit the Highway 46 Mileage Chart page for a list of mileage reference points along Highway 46.

HYPERLINK TO HWY 46 ROUTE MAP PAGE - © Cameron Bevers             HYPERLINK TO HWY 46 MILEAGE TABLE PAGE - © Cameron Bevers             HYPERLINK TO HWY 46 PHOTOGRAPHS PAGE - © Cameron Bevers

Additional Information About King's Highway 46:

King's Highway 46 - Route Information  (At Scott Steeves' website: asphaltplanet.ca)

King's Highway 46 - A Virtual Tour  (At Scott Steeves' website: asphaltplanet.ca)

HYPERLINK TO HWY 45 PAGE - © Cameron Bevers             HYPERLINK TO MAIN MENU PAGE - © Cameron Bevers             HYPERLINK TO HWY 47 PAGE - © Cameron Bevers

Website contents, photos & text © 2002-2023, Cameron Bevers (Webmaster) - All Rights Reserved  /  Contact Me

Valid HTML 4.01!   Valid CSS!