‘Get rid of the tolls on the 412’: Whitby’s mayor has suggestions for Ontario’s next government

Click to play video: 'Whitby mayor discusses concerns ahead of provincial election'
Whitby mayor discusses concerns ahead of provincial election
The Highway 412 toll road is top of mind for Whitby Mayor Don Mitchell heading into Ontario election on June 7. Michael Davidson has more – Jun 4, 2018

Whitby, Ont. — Don Mitchell, mayor of Whitby, says the winner of the provincial election on June 7 should get rid of tolls on Highway 412.

“Get rid of them and start again,” he says of the usage fees on Hwy 412, the only north-south 400-series highway in the entire GTA and Hamilton area that is tolled.

The road was imposed over the wishes of Whitby Council back in the 1990s, but was never discussed about being a tolled highway until 2009.

The issue is something the new government could change, Mitchell said.

“A new leader can look at the stark reality that sits here now and say that it is fair to get rid of those tolls,” Mitchell said.

He also points out at how the highway is “never busy during rush hour.” Meanwhile, Lakeridge Road, which runs parallel to the highway, is always busy.

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While Mitchell is uncertain who will win the election on Thursday, the one thing he is sure of that “this sort of battle takes a lot of political courage [and] a lot of political common sense.”

Mitchell also knows that the longer the government waits, the harder it will be to make the change. That is why they are “focused on this key issue that would make life easier and more affordable and fair for Whitby and Durham residents.”

There is an online petition currently that will call upon the new government to end tolling on the Hwy 412. As of Monday afternoon, it had roughly 2,300 of its goal of 2,500 support.

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