With the debate heating up around what to do about the Gardiner Expressway the Women’s Post encourages all city councilors to break free of political alliances and study the issue that will shape Toronto well into the future. The decision to support the Boulevard or Hybrid options ties into so many other questions.
Does the decision to rebuild the East Gardier today lead to rebuilding rest of the crumbling expressway with a cost estimate of close to $2 Billion?
How much more will it cost taxpayers to maintain an elevated highway in comparison to maintaining a boulevard?
Why are major cities taking down their elevated highways on their waterfronts?
The truck association claims that their drivers won’t use the Gardiner Expressway – Don Valley Parkway route if a boulevard replaced the elevated highway — how many trucks will stop using it and will it speed up travel times for commuters?
Below are the pros and cons around the Gardiner Expressway issue.
The Boulevard Option pros:
– push truck traffic away from the Gardiner and DVP – helping to alleviate gridlock on those highways
– save the city close to $500 million in initial cost and millions more in future maintenance
– reclaim the waterfront and add 12 more acres than the Hybrid option offers
– more reclaimed land creates more tax dollars for the city
– Toronto health believes it is the healthier choice for the citizens of Toronto
– experts like Jan Gehl call for tear down of Gardiner East to enhance the waterfront
– make Toronto competitive with other world class cities that have taken down their elevated waterfront highways
The Boulevard Option cons:
– disrupt truck and freight traffic using the Gardiner Expressway – Don Valley Parkway route
– add 2-3 minutes in commute times for drivers
The Hybrid Option pros:
– enable truck traffic to continue using both the Gardiner and DVP
– allow a continuous route along the waterfront
– maintain the same travel time for commuters
– trucking industry support
The Hybrid Option cons:
– cause more pollution in the core
– cost more to build and maintain pushing costs onto our children and grandchildren
– smaller amount of reclaimed land will limit future tax intake for the city
– health risks for residents of Toronto
– less competitive than other world class cities that are taking down their elevated waterfront highways to open up their waterfront to development
– increases the likelihood of Toronto having to rebuild entire Gardiner Expressway at estimated cost of $2 billion