Comment 71068

By Bumper Music (anonymous) | Posted November 06, 2011 at 10:24:44

They don’t want taxes or tolls, but more than half of Toronto area residents say they would support a congestion charge for motorists driving into the downtown, according to an Angus Reid poll for Torstar News Service.

Although most residents indicated they were relatively satisfied with the region’s transportation system, a majority would also like to see their daily commute improved. Many, however, fear that it’s only going to get worse in the coming decade.

While commuters are overwhelmingly opposed to the tax and toll schemes being floated to fund public transit improvements, the poll showed congestion fees were a measure they might be willing to consider.

Fifty-five per cent of the 1,001 people surveyed said they strongly or moderately support a congestion charge like the one used to curb traffic in central London, England. Only 38 per cent were opposed to such a fee.

Respondents living downtown gave the strongest support to a charge that would be levied on drivers entering the core at certain times.

“More than a toll, this is a way of addressing how to fund (transportation) but it’s a way also of just reducing congestion. I think anyone who comes to Toronto on a regular basis recognizes traffic’s a pretty big problem,” said Jaideep Mukerji, Angus Reid vice-president of public affairs.

The poll did not, however, determine how respondents would feel if they were personally affected by congestion fees, he said.

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