Ontario Highway 89

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Highway 89

Route information
Maintained by Ministry of Transportation
Length107.0 km[1] (66.5 mi)
Major junctions
West end Highway 9 in Harriston
(continues as  Highway 23London)
Major intersections Highway 6Mount Forest
 Highway 10Shelburne
East end Highway 400 near Cookstown
CountiesDufferin, Grey, Simcoe, Wellington
TownsAlliston, Cookstown, Harriston, Mount Forest, Shelburne
Highway system
Highway 85 Highway 93
Former provincial highways
←  Highway 88 Highway 90  →

King's Highway 89, commonly referred to as Highway 89, is an east–west provincially maintained highway in the south central portion of the Canadian province of Ontario, stretching 107 kilometres (66 mi) from the junction of Highway 9 and Highway 23 in Harriston in the west, to Highway 400 just east of Cookstown in the east. The principal urban centres along the highway include Alliston, Shelburne and Mount Forest. Outside these towns, the highway travels through rural farmland across a large part of southwestern Ontario.

Highway 89 was established in 1937 as a result of the rerouting of Highway 9 between Orangeville and Highway 27. In 1963, the route was extended west to Palmerston and east to Highway 400. Plans were conceived during the late 1970s to push the highway further east to Highway 12 via Ravenshoe Road, resulting in a brief extension to Highway 11. However, environmental protest over the chosen route through the Holland Marsh resulted in the cancellation of plans in 1986. In 1997, the section between Highway 400 and Highway 11 was decommissioned. The most recent change to the route took place in 2003, when the section of Highway 89 between Palmerston and Harriston was renumbered as part of Highway 23, creating a shared terminus at a junction with Highway 9.

Route description

The route forms the main streets of several of the small towns that dot the highway east to west, namely Cookstown, Alliston and Shelburne. The highway also forms the backbone of many small villages and hamlets between the larger centres, such as Conn, Keldon, Primrose, Violet Hill, Rosemont and Nicolston.[2]

The highway formerly continued past its current eastern terminus at Highway 400 to Yonge Street, formerly Highway 11, in the hamlet of Fennell. This section is now numbered as Simcoe County Road 89. East of Fennel, the roadway continues as Simcoe County Road 3 / Shore Acres Drive. The highway also continued past its current western terminus in Harriston, taking the route to Palmerston that is now numbered as Highway 23.[3]

The highway mostly runs through farmland and small communities, although the route does pass by Earl Rowe Provincial Park and the Honda car manufacturing plant in the Alliston area. Other parks and natural areas that are close to the route are Boyne Valley Provincial Park and Mono Cliffs Provincial Park, both of which are located on the Niagara Escarpment. Further west is the Luther Marsh Conservation Area, a vast wilderness area that surrounds Luther Lake.[2]


Highway 89 was created out of a highway rerouting in the late 1930s. Originally, it formed the routing of Highway 9, which until then turned north at Orangeville, travelling concurrently with Highway 10, then turning east to Cookstown. On February 10, 1937, Highway 9 was rerouted along its present course east of Orangeville.[4] By 1938, Highway 89 was designated along the former route of Highway 9.[5]

Highway 89 remained as-is until the early 1960s, when it was extended west to Palmerston and east to Highway 400. On April 1, 1963, the highway was assumed through the counties of Dufferin, Grey and Wellington.[6] The section between Highway 27 and Highway 400 was assumed the following day.[7]

During the mid-1970s, Highway 89 was extended east to Highway 11 at Fennell. This section was eventually returned to the jurisdiction of Simcoe County on April 1, 1997.[8] During the spring of 2003, the MTO renumbered several highways to improve route continuity. Among these was the renumbering of a section of Highway 89 between Harriston and Palmerston.[9] The result of this renumbering was a shared terminus between Highway 89 and Highway 23 at an intersection with Highway 9.

Extension to Highway 12

During the late 1970s, plans arose to create a new highway link on the south side of Lake Simcoe to connect Highway 400 and Highway 12. The route for this extension was announced on June 30, 1978. It was to follow 11th Line from Highway 400 east to the Holland Marsh, where it would cross towards the northeast onto the alignment of Ravenshoe Road (York Road 32). The extension would traverse the length of Ravenshoe Road to Lakeridge Road (Durham Road 23), where it would zig-zag onto Concession Road 7 to end immediately north of Sunderland.[10] However, heavy environmental protests ensued over the chosen route through the marsh. Consequently, then Transportation Minister Ed Fulton officially cancelled the extension on April 21, 1986.[11] The proposal has since been reborn as the Bradford Bypass.[12]

Major intersections

The following table lists the major junctions along Highway 89, as noted by the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario.[1] 

WellingtonHarriston0.00.0 Highway 9 west – Walkerton, Kincardine / County Road 109 east – Teviotdale, Orangeville / Highway 23 south – London
Minto5.38.5 County Road 2 – Clifford
WellingtonGrey lineMount Forest15.024.1Beginning of Mount Forest Connecting Link agreement
16.927.2 Highway 6 – Guelph
18.229.3End of Mount Forest Connecting Link agreement
Conn30.248.6 County Road 14 south – Arthur / County Road 14 north – Flesherton
DufferinEast Luther-Grand Valley47.977.1 County Road 25 south – Grand ValleyFormerly Highway 25
Shelburne59.796.1Beginning of Shelburne Connecting Link agreement
61.398.7 Highway 10 north – Owen SoundBeginning of Highway 10 concurrency and former Highway 24 concurrency
County Road 124 – CollingwoodEnd of former Highway 24 concurrency
66.2106.5 Highway 10 south – OrangevilleEnd of Highway 10 concurrency; end of Shelburne Connecting Link agreement
SimcoeAlliston84.5136.0 County Road 50 south – BoltonFormerly Highway 50
Cookstown107.0172.2 Highway 400 – Toronto, Barrie
Fennell112.4180.9 Highway 11 (Yonge Street)Decommissioned
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
  •       Closed/former


  1. ^ a b Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (2016). "Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT) counts". Retrieved January 1, 2021.
  2. ^ a b Ontario Back Road Atlas (Map). Cartography by MapArt. Peter Heiler. 2010. pp. 27–30. § D20–H30. ISBN 978-1-55198-226-7.
  3. ^ Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (April 1, 1989). "Provincial Highways Distance Table". Provincial Highways Distance Table: King's Secondary Highways and Tertiary Roads. Government of Ontario: 79–80. ISSN 0825-5350.
  4. ^ "Appendix 4 - Schedule of Assumptions and Reversions". Annual Report (Report). Department of Highways. March 31, 1937. p. 51.
  5. ^ Ontario Road Map (Map). Cartography by C.P. Robins. Ontario Department of Highways. 1938–39. § J7–K8. Retrieved February 3, 2021 – via Archives of Ontario.
  6. ^ "District No. 5—Owen Sound - Maintenance". Annual Report (Report). Department of Highways. March 31, 1963. p. 102.
  7. ^ "Appendix 3A - Schedule of Designations and Re-designations". Annual Report (Report). Department of Highways. March 31, 1963. p. 269.
  8. ^ Highway Transfers List (Report). Ministry of Transportation of Ontario. April 1, 1997. p. 7.
  9. ^ Ministry of Transportation (February 11, 2002). "Ontario government improves provincial highway numbering". Newswire. Archived from the original on August 4, 2002. Retrieved January 10, 2012.
  10. ^ Public and Safety Information Branch (June 30, 1978). "Route Selected to Link Highways 400 and 12 South of Lake Simcoe" (Press release). Ministry of Transportation and Communications.
  11. ^ Brehl, Robert (May 13, 1986). "Highway Decision Challenged". North. The Toronto Star. p. N2. ProQuest 435438889. Retrieved March 30, 2021.
  12. ^ "Bradford Bypass Gaining New Life?". Innisfil Journal. December 1, 2011. Retrieved March 30, 2021 – via Simcoe.com.

External links