GTA West Corridor Highway (Highway 413)

TO: Town of Caledon

RE: February 1, 2022 Council Meeting Agenda: Item 10.2.2. GTA West Corridor (Highway 413)

Dear Mayor Allan Thompson and Councillors,  

The Federation of Urban Neighbourhoods (Ontario) Inc. (FUN) represents many residents’ associations in Ontario’s urban areas.  Resident associations in turn are engaged with their municipal governments in land use planning and development, and advocacy regarding policy and priority setting re service provision, and revenues. FUN believes that sustainable urban regions are characterized by environmental balance, fiscal viability, infrastructure investment, and social renewal.  

This is to advise you that the Federation of Urban Neighbourhoods has serious concerns with the proposal to proceed with the Highway 413. It represents the start of what is in essence a whole new 400 series highway system north of Toronto that we believe will have major negative implications for the residents of the Town of Caledon. 

Our concerns can be summarized as follows:

  1. The highway, if built, would encourage and facilitate an unprecedented level of urban sprawl in the GTA, which would destroy important green spaces and prime farmland.
  2. People who live along the highway route (your residents) will suffer health impacts.
  3. Commuters will see diminishing benefits from the highway (due to induced demand). And in any case the pandemic has drastically changed our commuting patterns.
  4. It will incur a significant cost to taxpayers which will be borne by the Provincial Government alone (the Federal Government has indicated it will NOT cost-share).

This is to request that Caledon Council: 

  1. Do not support or endorse the GTA West Highway 413;
  2. Request the Auditor General’s Office to conduct a cost/benefit analysis on the GTA West corridor, and
  3. Request the Ontario Government to take immediate steps to force the owners of Highway 407 to lower the highway toll rates for trucks so that trucks will no longer avoid Highway 407.

Respectfully submitted,

Geoff Kettel

Photo credit: Jason Zhang, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons