Q: Why is the province extending Highway 407 East to Highway 35/115?
A: Extending Highway 407 East to Highway 35/115 will help build strong communities and a transportation network that will strengthen Ontario’s economy. It is important for the Region of Durham and the cities of Peterborough and Kawartha Lakes and the surrounding communities.
This investment is also part of the Open Ontario plan to create jobs and build economic capacity across the province.
Q: How will it help the economy?
A: It will create opportunities for business, population and employment growth. More than 13,000 jobs will be created in the first phase phase alone.
It will also relieve congested sections of Highway 401— Canada’s busiest highway — and improve the movement of goods and services across Ontario. This is very important in the Ontario-Quebec corridor, which handles more than 74 per cent of Canada’s international trade. That corridor contributed $560 billion to Canada’s economy in 2007.
Q: Who will own the highway?
A: The Province of Ontario will own and control Highway 407 East. The government will also regulate and collect the tolls and ensure customer service objectives are met. Highway 407 East is a significant public asset that will increase in value over time and produce annual revenue for the Province.
Q: How much will it cost to build?
A:The contract with the successful bidder, including contract cost, will be released publicly on Infrastructure Ontario’s website, when available.
Infrastructure Ontario is working with the Ministry of Transportation to select a company to design, build, finance and maintain Highway 407 East, and ensure that it is built on time and on budget.
Q: So this a case of alternative financing and procurement (AFP). Why is the province using this method?
A: AFP is an innovative way of financing and delivering large public infrastructure projects. With AFP, the public sector sets the scope and purpose of the project, while the construction is financed and carried out by the private sector. This transfers project risks to the private sector and allows the government to access alternate sources of capital.
Q: When will construction begin?
A: We are moving as quickly as possible to move the project forward. A more detailed construction timetable will be set after the selected bidder develops the project schedule.
We are moving as quickly as possible to move the project forward. Advance works are underway including the construction of an overpass on Highway 7 in Whitby. In addition, design work is underway related to the relocation of key utilities and a railway as well as property acquisition along the entire corridor.
The target is to open the first phase in late 2015 and be to Highway 35/115 in 2020, with an interim opening at Taunton Road at the East Durham Link by 2017.
Q: How will the highway connect to 401?
A. There will be two links connecting the proposed Highway 407 East to Highway 401. By 2015 there will be a four-lane, north-south highway connecting Highway 407 East and Highway 401 west of Oshawa. This link is located just east of Lake Ridge Road and serves as a full freeway connection. East of Oshawa, there will also be a similar link from Highway 407 to Highway 401, in Clarington, near Courtice Road.