News Release: Long-Term Transportation Plan Needed

LONG-TERM TRANSPORTATION PLAN NEEDED TO ADDRESS PROVINCE’S DIVERSE TRANSPORTATION NEEDS

The Ontario Chamber Network releases key transportation recommendations to better serve needs of businesses and residents

Vaughan – December 5, 2018 – Today, the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce (VCC) and the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) released Moving Forward: A Strategic Approach to Ontario’s Transportation Needs, a policy report calling on the Ontario Government to develop a Long-Term Transportation Plan. The report highlights three areas of opportunity that will help improve the mobility of Ontarians and addresses the current and future transportation needs of the province.

“Transportation is the backbone of our economy, affecting the movement of people and goods and the everyday lives of Ontarians and businesses,” said Brian Shifman, President and CEO of the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce. “Congestion, limited transit connectivity, population growth, aging assets, unique regional needs and a historic under-investment in infrastructure have led to a significant gap between the actual and needed infrastructure in Ontario. This has led to real challenges faced by Ontario residents and businesses every single day.”

In a recent OCC survey, 60 percent of Ontario businesses rated existing transportation infrastructure as fair or poor. With much of the existing infrastructure in Ontario built in the 1950s and 1960s, both Chambers recognize that the costs of investment are high, and Ontario is far behind when it comes to building new and maintaining old infrastructure.

The VCC and the OCC have developed 13 tangible and pragmatic transportation recommendations for a stronger Ontario within three key areas of opportunity. This approach will help to address the current and future transportation needs of the province with a focus on:

  1. Transit planning governance;
  2. Moving people and goods by rail; and
  3. Autonomous vehicles.

 

The report points to short- and long-term opportunities. This includes CN Rail’s Milton Logistics Hub, the use of advanced signalling technology to increase capacity on subways, VIA Rail’s High Frequency Rail proposal, bringing two-way all-day GO Train service to the Innovation Corridor, developing ‘Union Station West’, and the return of passenger rail to Northern Ontario.

“Fifty percent of Ontario businesses view transportation infrastructure as critical to their competitiveness,” said Shifman. “Moving forward, the province needs a plan that is strategic, optimizes existing assets, leverages the private sector and technology, and takes into account the unique needs of our province.”

Ontario was the first province in Canada to implement a pilot regulatory framework to allow for the testing of autonomous vehicles and driverless technology. The report calls attention to the readiness of the province for the reality of autonomous vehicles in the near future, recommending Ontario capitalize on its first-mover status in this space.

The VCC and the OCC have been active on the transportation file for years, looking at transit and transportation governance, the use of rail for the movement of both people and goods, and the province’s autonomous vehicle readiness. Their recent report on transportation makes the case for a Long-Range Transportation Plan that can deliver a strategy for better managing the province’s interconnected transportation assets while serving the needs of Ontarians.

Read the report: Moving Forward: A Strategic Approach to Ontario’s Transportation Needs.

 

— 30 —

For more information please contact: 

Abdus Samad

Vaughan Chamber of Commerce
Manager of Government Relations and Policy
T: 905-761.1355
C: 613-697-2435
abdus@Vaughanchamber.ca

 

About Vaughan Chamber of Commerce:

The Vaughan Chamber of Commerce is the premier membership and networking association in Vaughan.  The VCC proudly represents business from all sectors of the economy including large corporations and small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs).  The VCC is a strong voice on public policy issues of importance to the local business community, such as infrastructure, transportation and opportunities for business growth.

 

Related Posts

Ontario’s Fall Economic Statement 2022

On November 14th, Minister Bethlenfalvy released the 2022 Fall Economic Statement (FES) for Ontario titled “Ontario’s Plan to Build: A Progress Update”.  This year’s Fall Economic Statement also includes a progress report on the Provincial government’s plan...