Comment 36205

By Ted Mitchell (registered) | Posted December 10, 2009 at 19:45:01

Tolls on major routes- absolutely- but there's also a problem with congestion on local roads.

Therefore you also need a real gas tax, and funnel this combined revenue into transit, road maintenance, and other externalizations of car culture such as trauma, diabetes and heart disease mediated through inactivity and poor air quality.

I don't know when the political will can be found to do this, but it has to happen or increased congestion and the reason for it - stagnant, selfish thinking - will creep further into our society and weigh down all kinds of innovation. Canada is already a laggard in creativity and R&D as a result of the last couple decades of middle class hollowing out, tax cuts, and shifting spending to the squeaky wheels. This will drag down our economy and make us progressively less competitive globally.

Any self-interested strategy is bound to fail, because that's what got us into this mess. Road tolls + gas tax funding better transit is a collective action that benefits society on the whole and is unequivocally more fair than the current subsidized arrangement. Some good leader has to have the guts to say this is more important than any individual gripes.

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