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News 24/07/2019

A report highlights the benefits provided by 407 ETR since its privatization

The report finds investment by private sector from 1999 to 2017 has contributed $14.1 billion to Ontario GDP

The Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis (CANCEA) has issued a report highlighting both the historical and forecasted contributions the 407 ETR toll road makes to the region and to Ontario. The report, entitled “Economic Impacts of Highway 407 ETR: Implications for Travellers, Transportation and Prosperity”, concluded that the highway has been a strong and consistent contributor to the economic activity, quality of life and social benefits enjoyed by the people living and working across the corridor.

The report finds investment by private sector from 1999 to 2017 has contributed $14.1 billion to Ontario GDP and has saved 577 million hours of driving time — worth over $20 billion.

It also highlights the reduction in CO2 emissions that are attributed to 407 ETR being free flowing and the lower social costs attributable to 407 ETR as a result of it being a roadway with far fewer collisions.

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Among the many important findings presented in the report, the following are highlighted:

1. Since 1999, Highway 407 ETR has supported economic benefits totalling $15.9 billion within Ontario.

2. Drivers save an average of over 22.7 million hours on the road annually and commercial/business users save an average of 7.7 million hours of driving each year. Both are forecasted to continue to grow.

3. Highway 407 ETR is expected to support $724 million of economic benefits annually within Ontario if user trends and investment in the highway continue as they have in the past.

4. The value of the activity occurring in the Highway 407 ETR corridor includes $16.5 billion of residential economic activity and $2.6 billion of commercial real estate activity annually.

5. 407 ETR is the longest stretch of non-bottleneck highway in the GTHA.

6. Highway 407 ETR usage has steadily increased since 1999 and averaged 413,000 weekday trips in 2017, representing 50% more trips than there are riders on the entire network of GO buses and trains on an average weekday.

7. The total vehicle kilometres travelled in 2017 amounted to 2.6 billion. Most trips on the highway are associated with personal accounts, while business trips have increased at a higher rate than personal trips over the years.

8. Traffic speeds on Highway 407 ETR are consistently higher than on alternate routes, and the collision rate is low, relative to the provincial freeway average.

9. The cumulative savings in “social costs” as defined in the report have, since 1999, reached $1.4 billion. In 2017, savings in social costs were higher than the average – hitting $84 million.

10. By using 407 ETR, drivers emit 108 fewer metric tonnes of CO2 each year, on average. This is due to higher, consistent speeds that are closer to the speed at which emissions are minimized compared to the prevailing speeds on toll-free highways and major roads.
11. Every $1 invested by 407 ETR Inc. has resulted in a GDP increase of $1.54. Since 1999, 407 ETR Inc. has invested $4.6 billion into capital and operations. This has generated direct, indirect and induced effects that have contributed a combined total of $7.1 billion to provincial GDP (70% direct and indirect, 30% induced).

12. Since 1999, investments in Highway 407 ETR, as well as ongoing operation and maintenance activity has generated an average of 72,000 years of employment and $4.7 billion in wages.

13. 407 ETR operations has generated an average of $43 million dollars in tax revenue for the Provincial and Federal governments each year since 1999.

14. Since 2001, the population in the corridor has increased by 506,000 residents, while jobs have increased by 199,000.

The full report can be read at www.cancea.ca/407etr

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