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Traffic concerns in Ontario – Investments in roads is the solution


March 21, 2017
By Ontario Road Builders’ Association

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March 21, 2017 – A new survey released today by a broad consortium of both public and private sector transportation organizations found that more than nine in 10 Ontarians (96%) support government investment in transportation infrastructure, and among those surveyed, ranked investments in roads and bridges as No. 2 on their list of top infrastructure spending priorities. 

“Infrastructure plays a vital role in our economy today and into the future,” said Ashley De Souza, director of government relations for the Ontario Road Builders’ Association (ORBA). “Immediate action to relieve traffic congestion and improve our transportation infrastructure networks will continue to place Ontario at a competitive advantage. These results clearly show that while investments being made in expanding Ontario’s public transit systems are necessary, Ontarians feel strongly that government spending priorities should include investments in highways, roads and bridges at the top of the list.” 

A majority of Ontarians feel that traffic is at least somewhat of a concern in their daily lives, and many see investments in road infrastructure as the solution to road traffic concerns across the province. 

“Ontarians, appreciative of the importance that transportation plays in their lives, are looking for all orders of government to invest in infrastructure that makes getting around easier. If governments are to successfully address these concerns, innovative approaches to infrastructure investments will be critical,” said Scott Butler, manager, policy and research for the Ontario Good Roads Association (OGRA). 

Residents felt that for every dollar government invests in infrastructure, 17 cents should be spent on hospital infrastructure, 13 cents should go towards roads and bridges and 12 cents should be earmarked for repairing Ontario’s schools. Investments in affordable housing and public transit rounded out the top five. 

Just over half (53%) of Ontarians feel that highways, roads and bridges are the most important potential infrastructure investment as opposed to 26% who feel investments should be made towards light rail transit (LRT) and subways. 

On the topic of road tolls in Ontario, there were 66% of Ontario residents who think that tolls collected on roads should go towards road maintenance (47%) or infrastructure improvements and expansions (19%). 

The survey results have shown that residents in Ontario feel a top priority is for government investments to be made in road infrastructure to provide relief to the traffic congestion on the roads in their communities. 

The research is supported by the Ontario Road Builders’ Association (ORBA), Ontario Good Roads Association (OGRA), Trillium Automobile Dealers Association (TADA), Ontario Waste Management Association (OWMA) and Ontario Guide Rail Safety Coalition (OGRSC). 

About the Nanos Survey 
Nanos Research conducted an RDD dual frame (land- and cell-lines) telephone random survey of 500 residents of Ontario, 18 years of age or older, between January 25 and February 2, 2017 as part of an omnibus survey. Participants were randomly recruited by telephone using live agents and administered a survey. The results were statistically checked and weighted by age and gender using the latest Census information and the sample is geographically stratified to be representative of Ontario. Individuals were randomly called using random digit dialing with a maximum of five call backs. The margin of error for a random survey of 500 residents of Ontario is ±4.4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

About the Ontario Road Builders’ Association 
ORBA supports and promotes the growth of Ontario’s transportation infrastructure industry. As the voice of over 200 road building contractors and suppliers, ORBA members build and maintain the majority of Ontario’s provincial highway system, municipal roads, bridges and other public transportation infrastructure, employing over 30,000 workers. Visit orba.org for more information. 

About the Ontario Good Roads Association 
The mandate of the Ontario Good Roads Association is to represent the transportation and public works interests of municipalities through advocacy, consultation, training and the delivery of identified services. Visit www.ogra.org for more information. 

About the Trillium Automobile Dealers Association 
Since 1908, the Trillium Automobile Dealers Association has been the voice of Ontario’s new car dealers. Our 1,100 dealers represent every brand and franchise, operate across Ontario and employ 53,000 people. Visit www.tada.ca for more information. 

About the Ontario Waste Management Association 
The OWMA is the largest waste management association in Canada and represents more than 250 members within Ontario’s private and public sectors. OWMA members manage 85% of Ontario’s waste and have diverse interests and capital investments in areas, such as waste and recycling collection, material recycling and resource recovery, organics processing and composting, hazardous waste recycling and safe disposal, and landfills and transfer stations. Learn more about the OWMA at www.OWMA.org. 

About the Ontario Guide Rail Safety Coalition 
The Ontario Guide Rail Safety Coalition (OGRSC) represents companies from across Ontario that, collectively, install about two-thirds Ontario’s road-side safety equipment and employ more than 500 people. OGRSC members are responsible and professional businesses that seek to improve Ontario’s road safety.