TORONTO, Ont. — The Greater Toronto Area (GTA) needs $800 million annually from the provincial and federal governments to beat traffic gridlock, an influential panel reports.
“The real challenge facing (the Toronto area) is that its municipalities do not have the fiscal capacity to end the gridlock that is threatening to choke the GTA and bring the economy of Ontario to a halt,” writes Gordon Chong, chairman of the Greater Toronto Services Board (GTSB).
Chong says the province must give his board new powers to manage transit and regional growth.
The board is made up of representatives from the 29 municipalities in the GTA, as well as the city of Hamilton, among others.
“What we need is a commitment from the two senior levels of government to get back into the capital funding of infrastructure so we can relieve the problems we’re facing,” he said to media yesterday.
The province is preparing to roll out a $100-million program to help municipalities pay for transit capital projects.
The board also proposed that it be made responsible for “growth management,” including some roads, in Toronto and its surrounding regions.