We recognize that businesses seeking to invest and expand
will look at well-known city centres and their surrounding
municipalities as a single urban region. But the political reality of
legally separate municipalities can present roadblocks for business,
often preventing the region as a whole from realizing its full economic
This paper does not point to a single "right" model. Rather,
it looks at several examples of jurisdictions where a regional
approach to economic development is yielding remarkable results. The
paper also studies how regions with a single investment promotion agency
(IPA) are attracting unprecedented levels of investment.
The believes that coordination and collaboration among
municipal leaders and stakeholders is essential to the global
competitiveness of our region. This approach does not demand a new
government structure. But it does require open dialogue and the
political will for positive, progressive collaboration among regional
leaders and stakeholders.
In short, our political leadership needs to view Toronto through the
same regional lens as the private sector.
With the 2010 election just weeks away, now is the time to present
ideas and to call on municipal candidates to embrace a regional vision.
After the ballots are counted, Toronto’s next mayor will have a
landmark opportunity to take the lead in rallying all municipal partners
to present the advantages of the entire region to the world with one
Download your copy of Better
Together now. Visit VoteToronto2010.com to see
how municipal candidates are responding to our research and to share
your perspective with all Toronto Board of Trade members and
Moving ahead: funding Metrolinx's The Big Move
In May 2010, the Toronto Board of Trade released The
Move Ahead: Funding "The Big Move," a discussion paper
that outlines and analyzes 16 revenue tools and one cost-saving
mechanism that could be implemented in order to fund Metrolinx’s
bold regional transportation plan, The Big Move.
Board of Trade members — who do business throughout the Toronto
region — have told us time and again that they view gridlock as
their number one barrier to competitiveness. They have
also clearly told us they see funding an effective regional
solution as a top priority for their business and their
city. That is why discussions around funding for The Big
Move are a key component of our second
VoteTronto2010.com campaign theme: Growing the city’s and the
The Board recognizes that new fees and/or taxes are a sensitive issue
for our members and residents of the Toronto region. We also know that
traffic congestion and gridlock costs the region $6 billion
annually and hampers our ability to attract investment and grow
our economy. Moving people and goods effectively is essential to our
competitiveness and quality of life.
After decades of chronic underinvestment, The Big Move seeks
to address our transit and transportation deficiencies. But Metrolinx
still needs more than $40 billion in funding to turn its critical plan
into a reality.
The Move Ahead is not a set of recommendations. It does not
offer any policy position. Rather it puts forward options that can
be used to fill this substantial funding gap. Our next municipal leaders
need to demonstrate their commitment to The Big Move and to
identify which tools they would use to keep the Toronto region
As the Board's Scorecard
on Prosperity 2010 pointed out, the interests of Toronto and
its municipal neighbours are intertwined. Toronto must look out for
its interests, but we cannot go the distance alone. As the
representative of the core of the region, Toronto’s next mayor has
an opportunity to lead the charge on regional transportation
solutions and the economic development agenda for the region.