QUEEN’S PARK, Ont. — Ontario’s Finance Minister Jim Flaherty has challenged the federal government to match Ontario’s investment in transportation, outlining the province’s plan for Toronto.
“We urge federal Finance Minister Paul Martin, in his economic update on Thursday, to step forward and become a highway and transit funding partner. The U.S. government is investing over $200 billion U.S. in transportation. A comparable commitment by the government of Canada would be over $20 billion,” says Flaherty.
The Ontario government is creating a Golden Horseshoe Transit Investment Partnership initiative (GTIP) with $250 million from the $1 billion SuperBuild Millenium Partnership initiative, a public-private sector investment initiative.
The partnership will support the expansion of inter-regional transit infrastructure, such as commuter rail, light rail and dedicated transit ways.
“Eliminating congestion on our highways is key to improving the quality of life for people in the GTA and the surrounding regions. In turn, a good quality of life is essential to attracting even more investment to Ontario. As more businesses and families move to Ontario to take advantage of our growing economy, more pressure is put on our highways and transit systems,” says Flaherty.
Already, last week SuperBuild issued a Request for Proposals to select an independent financial advisor to assist in the development of a plan for the extension of the 407 east to Hwy.s 35/115.