Great Golden Horseshoe accounts for about 70% of Ontario’s GDP, yet its transportation system lags behind which results in traffic congestion, lack of convenient mobility of people and goods - an important characteristic of a healthy and growing economy - and causes multi-billion dollars in lost productivity that’s projected to increase unless we act.
Of course, to enhance GGH transportation systems require working on all modes of transportation. However, for immediate relief and to revitalize many communities within the GGH, turning HW407 to a toll-free road will be immensely invaluable.
A toll-free HW407 will not only relieve other overly congested highways such as QEW, HW403, HW401, etc. but more importantly will revitalize many communities along its corridor that suffer from lack of access to a highway and as a result creates local traffic congestion within these communities such as north Burlington, Oakville, Missisauga and south Milton, etc. A toll-free HW407 needs to be widened to increase its capacity and its route needs also to be extended its to reach Fort Erie for similar purposes in the Hamilton-Niagara region.
A simple look at a cost/benefit analysis to the idea proves the viability of the proposition assuming that the buyback would cost about $12 billions (assumption is made based on publicly available information about the yearly revenues). Clearly the recovered cost of lost productivity will work towards that as well as the economic growth that will be experienced along HW407 corridor as a result of construction activities, municipal revenues, etc. A major benefit of this idea is that it can help mitigating the housing crisis by opening its corridor for development. These developments will be distributed across the GGH, providing quick relief to the housing market while solveing transportation problem in the same time.
A toll-free HW407 is vital to the growing GGH and the housing crisis is making the move to make it happen even more urgent and justifiable. A buyback deal could potentially include building a future toll road west GGH that provides similar services.