A Comprehensive Plan to Help End Gridlock

“A city that keeps traffic moving improves our quality of life and improves the economy.” - Mark Saunders

Toronto - Today, Mark Saunders unveiled his plan to ease traffic and congestion by policing rush-hour chokepoints and speeding up road construction with double shifts.

According to a 2022 global traffic scorecard, Toronto is one of the worst cities in the world to navigate; the third worst city in North America for transit; and, the worst city in Canada for traffic. The average commuter lost 118 hours waiting in traffic last year. That’s 23 working days of the year.

“People have to be able to move around our city easily. Whether it’s by car, transit, or bike, they need to get to their job and to school in a safe and timely way,” said Saunders. “There are a lot of things that aren’t working and it’s going to take a lot of changes to move our City forward. As Mayor, I will bring forward those bold solutions to tackle congestion.”

As Mayor, Saunders would implement a plan to:

Move faster:

  • Triple the fine for cars or trucks that stop where prohibited, especially during peak periods.
  • Deploy 200 Traffic Wardens to work with existing Parking Enforcement officers to:
    • Assist with critical chokepoints across the city during rush hour and before and after major events to get traffic moving faster and to ensure pedestrian safety.
    • Ticket and fine people who “block the box.” If someone cannot clear the intersection in a safe and timely manner, don’t enter it.
  • Create special delivery truck zones on side streets to alleviate pressure on major thoroughfares.
  • Prohibit lane-blocking permits in the downtown core for construction similar to what is done in New York, London and Tokyo.
  • Appoint a city staff member to oversee coordination between Toronto’s road work, TTC, and all utilities so that work or repairs are done at the same time to avoid roads being ripped up more than once.
  • Explore the use of technologies like artificial intelligence and camera systems for traffic flow, traffic light coordination, road violations and parking infractions like other major cities do.

Work faster:

  • Require all road construction to move to double shifts in the summertime in the downtown core so that roads are fixed faster.
  • Where possible, add extra shifts, including overnight shifts, to get the job done.
  • Work with the province to “double shift” the work on the Ontario Line for all work going through the DT Core to finish the cut-and-cover sections faster.

Background - Global Traffic Scoreboard