Congestion Hurts: Public Transit is the Best Way to Clear the Air

Thursday, Feb 16.

Congestion in the GTA and Hamilton-Wentworth is estimated to cost the economy $2 billion per year. This is mostly the result of delays in deliveries by truck.

With urban sprawl, travel times for GTA commuters are expected to rise by an average of 12 minutes. Without additional investment in transit, this will mean an extra $28 million lost each day to congestion costs — a whopping $7 billion each year.

Add 1,000 travellers to a congested highway like the 401 and it would create a 6-km line-up. If these same travelers took the TTC and GO, the line-up would only increase by .25 km.

Public transit uses a twentieth of the space taken by the private automobile. Each full TTC bus removes 40 single-occupant cars from the road.

According to the Ontario Medical Association, the cost of air pollution-related health effects is $1 billion annually. That’s counting only hospital admissions, emergency room visits and absenteeism.

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