John Tory Wants Road Tolls On 2 Major Highways Into Downtown Toronto

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TORONTO — The mayor of Canada's largest city says he wants to impose a toll of roughly $2 on two major highways leading to Toronto's downtown core.

Mayor John Tory says tolls have been shown to ease congestion and would share the financial burden between all those who use the Don Valley Parkway and the Gardiner Expressway, not just Toronto taxpayers.

john tory
Toronto Mayor John Tory speaks in Toronto City Hall chambers on May 3, 2016. (Photo: Aaron Vincent Elkaim)

Tory says the money collected through tolls would be reserved for transit expansion and road repairs.

The mayor is proposing that money be placed in a separate fund overseen by an independent body and audited annually.

Ontario's transportation minister says he hasn't seen details of the plan, but notes Tory would need provincial approval to impose the road tolls.

Still needs provincial approval

Steven Del Duca promised to review whatever plan the city puts forward "very carefully."

The Ontario government is currently testing a pilot project that lets drivers without passengers pay to use the high occupancy vehicle lane on the Queen Elizabeth Way, and it plans to expand high occupancy toll lanes to other GTA highways.

"We will build out a full network HOTs over the expanse of the region in the coming years," Del Duca said Thursday. "We are completely committed to the deployment of the HOTs. The next HOT will be rolled out on the 427 when that extension is complete."

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