This has been a busy week, full of transit announcements, but there’s also some news for commuters who drive themselves to work.
Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca is to announce a pilot project Wednesday, which will see High Occupancy Toll(HOT) lanes put in between Oakville and Burlington on the QEW over the summer.
Existing HOV lanes will be converted to the HOT lanes; vehicles carrying two or more occupants will still be able to use the lanes for free, and single-occupant vehicles will have the option to purchase a permit to use them.
There will be a limited number of permits available for purchase during the pilot program.
Data collected during this time will be used to determine long term plans for more HOT lanes.
Dedicated HOT lanes with electronic tolling on Highway 427, from south of Highway 409 to north of Rutherford Road, are expected to open by 2021.
The lanes, which are the first step of Ontario’s plan to implement them through the region, are meant to “help manage congestion and add another option for travelers.”
According to the Ministry of Transportation, Ontario’s population is expected to grow by roughly 40% by 2041, and plans are in place to have the infrastructure in place to support it.
“This pilot project on the QEW is the first step of Ontario’s plan to implement HOT lanes throughout the region. The Request for Information will help us identify the latest technology to make HOT lanes efficient and well-managed. HOT lanes can benefit all drivers on a highway by improving travel times for everyone and keep the region moving.” – Steven Del Duca, Minister of Transportation