The Infrastructure Committee
develops policy positions and undertakes advocacy initiatives to advance infrastructure priorities that are essential to the Toronto region’s growth, development and competitiveness. The Committee is focused on advancing stable, long-term financing for a massive and long-overdue expansion of public transit and road networks. This Committee also serves as the Board’s Transportation Campaign Cabinet, leading initiatives to raise public awareness about infrastructure challenges, such as our Letsbreakthegridlock.com
campaign. The Committee also addresses other infrastructure areas, such as improving water/waste water and energy facilities.
Keeping the Toronto region moving ahead
The Toronto region’s prosperity and competitive advantage is dependent on our ability to move millions of people quickly and efficiently. Throughout its history, Toronto Region Board of Trade has led the way in promoting transportation infrastructure development – everything from subways to bike paths – to make our region the most productive and liveable in the world. But while our regional transit system was once a source of immense pride and an essential feature of what made this such a great place to live and work, it now faces massive challenges.
The Toronto region’s dramatic growth in recent years, combined with government fiscal pressures and years of underinvestment, have pushed the capacity of our existing transportation networks to their limits. Our Members are determined to make investment in transit infrastructure the centrepiece of our region’s economic development, and have consistently identified it as the No. 1 policy priority of the Board.
The Toronto Region Board of Trade has been instrumental in advancing regional integration of transportation infrastructure and services. We have worked with other chambers of commerce in Ontario on a campaign to force the provincial government to empower regional municipalities with the planning and fiscal tools necessary to get their transportation networks moving again. In the Toronto region, this led directly to the establishment of Metrolinx in 2006 as the agency responsible for planning and building new networks.
We have helped illustrate how our regional transportation challenges are a real and immediate threat to our prosperity through our Scorecard on Prosperity
series. Scorecard has highlighted the huge costs of congestion, including the $6 billion lost every year in productivity, and our lagging international ranking in commuting times and public transit investment. Our leadership also extends to advocacy efforts outlining transportation funding options
and a series of extensive public awareness campaigns
to draw attention to the need for fair and progressive transportation revenue tools
that will make our infrastructure plans a reality.
The responsible, workable solutions our Members have diligently researched and promoted have made transit funding a top priority. Politicians, citizens and decision makers are intensely discussing the new infrastructure revenue tools necessary to get on with the job of expanding our transportation network to meet the needs and attain the promise of the 21st Century.
The Toronto Board of Trade's leadership in starting the conversation through advocacy initiatives and public awareness campaigns has significantly moved the agenda forward on this issue. transportation infrastructure expansion
|Will province drag its feet on regional transit taxes?
Tess Kalinowski, Toronto Star
Transit issues need to be election priority: Toronto Board of Trade
David Nickle, Inside Toronto
A key business group is accusing provincial politicians of ignoring the elephant on Toronto's roads.
Gord Martineau/Avery Haines, CityNews at Six
Ontario election campaigns not focusing enough on gridlock, poll finds
Anita Elash, Globe and Mail
Funding to tackle gridlock 'a critical issue': Toronto Board of Trade
Print: Natalie Alcoba, National Post
Broadcast: Jackson Proskow, Global Toronto
Unlocking Gridlock in the GTA
Focus Ontario, Global Toronto
‘No. 1 on our agenda is improving transit’
Josh Rubin, Toronto Star
||"“If we are going to remain a vibrant city region then we must invest in the necessary infrastructure to support the healthy and sustainable growth of our region. While politically, the consideration of revenue tools may not at first be popular, the failure to act will be more detrimental to future generations.”
Stephen Diamond, President and CEO, Diamond Corp
“In putting forward a clear funding option to address the Metrolinx ‘The Big Move’ financing challenge the Toronto Region Board of Trade is signaling that the time to finally move ahead with addressing one of the economy’s greatest competitive challenges is now.”
Derek Burleton, Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist, TD Bank Financial Group