Category Archives for "Highways and Bridges"

Dec 24

MTO Southwestern Ontario Transportation Plan – Input to second Technical Advisory Committee Meeting

By Transport Action Ontario | Highways and Bridges , Intercity Rail and Bus , Southwestern Ontario

As discussed in our posting of June 5, 2023, MTO has set up a Technical Advisory Committee, led by Arcadis/IBI, to further develop its draft Southwestern Ontario Transportation Plan.

The Tenchical Advisory Committee held its second meeting on December 6, 2023.

Transport Action Ontario again participated actively in this meeting and subsequently provided detailed comments. These can be viewed below.

Nov 07

New Report on using Highway 407 for Trucking

By Transport Action Ontario | Highways and Bridges , Latest News

A new report has been released entitled The Freight Escape: How to Get Trucks Off the 401 Without Blowing a Hole in the Greenbelt. 

This report was commissioned by Environmental Defence with input from Transport Action Ontario and you can access this report here.

The report finds that subsidizing the toll on the 407 ETR is cheaper, easier, and better for the trucking industry than building the proposed Highway 413. It also shows that moving trucks from Highway 401 to the 407 will alleviate congestion for all road users and reduce journey times for truck drivers. This would also make building the proposed Highway 413 unnecessary, save taxpayers at least $6 billion (based on 2018 estimates), and conserve valuable natural spaces including 2000 acres of farmland and 400 acres of Greenbelt.

The Freight Escape report finds that moving trucks to the 407 will: 

  • Move 12,000 to 21,000 trucks a day off Highway 401, reducing daily traffic for passenger vehicles 
  • Cost $6 billion less than constructing the proposed Highway 413. Subsidizing the 407 trucking toll is estimated to cost $4 billion, which would be paid over a 30 year period. The Ontario government has not revealed a cost estimate for building Highway 413, but estimates cited in the media are as high as $10 billion 
  • Reduce cost and journey time for truck drivers: using Highway 407 will improve journey times for truckers by approximately 80 minutes, which would be less than half the length of time than the equivalent trip on Highway 401 
  • Conserve local natural spaces and local food production – including 2000 acres of farmland and 400 acres of Greenbelt land that would be paved by Highway 413.
Apr 16

Advocacy Summary for April, 2022 – April, 2023

By Transport Action Ontario | Events , Highways and Bridges , Intercity Rail and Bus , Latest News , Northern Ontario , Southwestern Ontario , Uncategorized , Urban Transit

Transport Action Ontario’s annual general meeting (AGM) was held in Toronto on April 15, 2023 in a hybrid format. The meeting followed a pro-forma agenda, including Treasurer’s report and election of officers and directors for the upcoming year.

The major part of the meeting was devoted to the President’s report, which summarized the extensive advocacy work undertaken by the organization all across the Province over the past 12 months. In total, work was conducted on about 30 items, with some successes and good progress on others.

For members and subscribers who were unable to attend the AGM, the President’s Report is attached as a FYI.

Mar 22

Gardiner East Transparency – Advocacy Update

By Transport Action Ontario | Highways and Bridges , Latest News

Transport Action Ontario is a core member of a coalition of community groups called Gardiner East Transparency (GET), calling for the City of Toronto to be transparent and to reveal the full go-forward costs and foregone revenues – potentially exceeding $1 billion – of its June, 2015 decision to build a colossal elevated link between the Gardiner East Expressway and the Don Valley Parkway.

A media release (see below) was issued on March 13, 2023 and was extremely well received, with over 10 radio, TV and print outlets picking up the story.

Unfortunately, despite many letters and deputations from residents, Toronto’s Infrastructure and Environment Committee chose on March 20 to not take further action on this matter. GET will continue its advocacy by keeping the issue visible during the upcoming Toronto mayoral campaign April 3 to June 26.

Feb 20

The Economic Case against Highway 413 – Toronto Star Op-Ed

By Transport Action Ontario | Highways and Bridges , Latest News

Ontario’s Highway 413 project continues to be actively discussed in the media. A recent op-ed (February 18, 2023) in the Toronto Star by Tom Rand summarized the economic case against the Highway. It extensively utilized research and reports by Transport Action Ontario, namely:

  • For the same capital cost of the Highway (about $8B), various rapid transit lines could be built which would have a capacity to carry about 4 times as many people per hour as the Highway
  • Providing a toll subsidy for trucks on the 407ETR toll road would be much more cost-effective than building the Highway to move freight.

The author also reviewed the value of the lost agricultural and ecosystem services provided by the lands that would be paved over by the Highway.

The article can be viewed here

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