WATCH: Gridlock solutions aren't easy, not cheap

Toronto's hopeful Mayors debate issues surrounding gridlock

Four heavy-hitters in Toronto's mayoral campaign squared off in a debate on Monday
Photo: James Moore/NEWSTALK 1010

There are no easy solutions to Toronto's problems with gridlock but no matter the route the city's leadership chooses to take, it would seem that it will involve more than a small contribution from ratepayers.

That much was clear from a mayoral debate on Monday morning.

Candidates John Tory, Olivia Chow, Karen Stintz, and David Soknacki took part in the discussion organised by transportation group 'Transport Futures.'

While all four hopeful mayors had differing opinions on where the city should take its transit vision, they seemed to agree that there would have to be a larger contribution from the tax base to generate the funding needed for the extensive projects that experts say will keep Toronto from gridlock oblivion.

Transportation and public transit have dominated the Toronto mayoral campaign since it began.   

John Tory has introduced a plan he calls “SmartTrack” which mainly use existing GO train tracks to run a surface subway from Mississauga, through Toronto’s downtown core, and up into Markham. 

It would electrify the current GO Train system. 

Olivia Chow is focused on boosting bus service and says she would nix the Scarborough subway in favour of an above-ground option. 

Former TTC Chair Karen Stintz says she would create a “Transportation Czar” who would oversee all transportation planning in the city. 

Stintz would also sell off city assets to pay for projects like a downtown relief line. 

Mayoral hopeful David Soknacki says he would put the brakes on a Scarborough subway and would revert back to the old LRT plan.

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  1. Angry Bill posted on 06/16/2014 10:07 AM
    A city that voted the fiberals back in isn't too likely to have the brains to vote Tory in as mayor, unfortunately. :(

    Go for it, Toronto. Vote socialist. Make it a clean sweep. Province AND city. You obviously don't think you're paying enough taxes, yet.
    1. Sonny posted on 06/16/2014 10:16 AM
      @Angry Bill The people of Ontario made their choice not to elect TEA party tories. There is a New Democrat, Liberal and several Conservatives as well as 50 something other mayoral candidates for the citizens of Toronto...
    2. john posted on 06/16/2014 11:15 AM
      @Sonny cant be any worse then the tea bag party the liberals will turn into .
    3. Sonny posted on 06/16/2014 11:24 AM
      @john How did voting for Ford; the conservative do? Congestion is worse and his Exec. have road contruction on the Gardiner and Lakeshore at the same time...
    4. Angry Bill posted on 06/16/2014 04:02 PM
      @Sonny There are other political stripes, but realistically none of them have a chance of getting in. It'll be Chow, or Tory. Stintz may have an outside chance as well as Soknacki. But those 2 are very outside, behind Tory I would say. I suppose you could say the Ford vote will, in the end, determine who gets in.

      So it's either Tory, or Chow, realistically. Of course, it's still a ways until October, but this is where it sits now.
  2. frank posted on 06/16/2014 11:59 AM
    What can politicians do to fix gridlock this year? Traffic must be with today.
  3. franklin posted on 06/16/2014 12:42 PM
    Why can't they load up those new streetcars on Queen and close it to vehicles?
    Remove all parking on east-west streets and all deliveries downtown during the day.
    End all downtown left turns. Anyone can turn more quickly by making three right turns.

    Next, address gridlock on the 401 and DVP by offering free express buses at first and then reduced fares. So what if we subsidize the ride? Let's end gridlock now and plan better transit for the future..
    1. dama posted on 06/16/2014 02:34 PM
      @franklin if down town is a ghost town then you can do what you had suggest, as in closing down Queen street and only letting buses on it..remove all parking, can be done if those building are not business... business needs parking to attract customers..

      GTA should temporary stop giving out permit to build condos,, or slap a "infrastructure fee" on the builders to pay for traffic routes.. and stop building attractions in GTA.. build it up north.. highway 7 or Woodbine..
      or in Mississauga..

    2. franklin posted on 06/16/2014 05:45 PM
      @dama Gridlock on each street is being caused by only a few hundred cars. Why can't we take one street, even as a pilot project, and close it to vehicles? As for businesses, I disagree that they rely on parking. They need pedestrians. Transit and bike lanes deliver that in spades.
    3. Beamer Smith posted on 06/16/2014 10:05 PM
      @dama Business needs parking? Except on St.Clair I guess.. no parking, gridlock.. a complete mess..
    4. dama posted on 06/17/2014 03:01 PM
      @Beamer Smith Business always needs parking.. consumers will not go to any place to shop without adequate parking.. you brought up St Clair;. thats a good example, when they were building it, there was no parking on the street.. they lost a lot of revenue

      Also. would you buy a lot of stuffs or some bulky thing and ride a bike home, Franklin?

      You bike to the corner store if you live around town..
  4. ToddK_2 posted on 06/16/2014 03:53 PM
    No left turns downtown (King and Bathurst left is ridiculous) and make side street parking free for businesses\Deliveries along Queen and King and for god sake increase the no parking\stopping Rush Hour hours to 3:30 PM to 7:30 PM. That way Street Cars take the left lane and cars can always pass in the right lane.
  5. ToddK_2 posted on 06/16/2014 03:57 PM
    ... and please for the love of god Olivia Chow doesn't get in. Mr. Tory has my vote.
    1. Sonny posted on 06/16/2014 06:10 PM
      @ToddK_2 Chow has been leading in the polls since joining the race despite it being a Forum poll...
  6. rick posted on 06/16/2014 07:44 PM
    Fill in Lake Ontario. that gives us 50% more space for roads downtown
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