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Ontario’s new Progressive Conservative government, less than a month after being sworn in, is giving new life to decades-old dreams of a new high-speed, express highway connecting rural communities across the province.
“The top-tier priority of this government is creating jobs and strengthening the economy of the province. And the truth is our roads are crumbling from under a massive amount of congestion, especially in that region and also the GTA, of course, it’s a five-minute drive in either direction,” Ontario Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca said.
The top priority of this government is creating jobs and strengthening the economy of the province. And the truth is our roads are crumbling from under a massive amount of congestion, especially in that region and also the GTA, of course, it’s a five-minute drive in either direction. Ontario Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca
But Doug Ford’s Ontario Government won’t stop there. In addition to highways, it wants to build a gas station and 12,000 new homes on Crown land in Niagara-on-the-Lake, a proposal some experts call “wildly” expensive.
“While it may seem like a great idea, there’s a cost at the local and regional level, because while it’s going to bring some jobs, it’s not going to bring the jobs that you need in very remote areas,” one expert said.
Local politicians support the plan, arguing the cost makes sense compared to infrastructure across the city of Toronto.
The province has a plan to complete the work in 20 years. In the meantime, Liberal legacy projects will be slowed. For example, new ferries, planned for the Great Lakes, will likely be delayed, as well as a new bridge over the lake.
Steven Del Duca says he’s not concerned by what the Liberals are doing, since the new government is going full speed ahead.
Bottom line? You’ll notice there aren’t any big transportation projects coming in the next year or two.
We really have an opportunity here to prioritize those infrastructure needs that are important to us. If you’re going to build a new express highway, there’s really only one choice and that is in the province of Ontario.
Steven Del Duca
From Newmarket, Ontario