Current Conditions
-4.1 C
Partly Cloudy
Today's Forecast
-7 C
Partly cloudy
Sponsored by Highland Ford

News And Views




Shop Local

More Local

Search The Web

Google Search

Local News

David talks about four-laning Highway 17

Tuesday, April 15, 2014   by: Staff



Ontario Government Announces 10 Year Plan for Northern and Rural Infrastructure

On Monday, David Orazietti MPP and the Ontario government announced the “Moving Ontario Forward” plan which will create a $29 billion fund for roads, bridges and highways throughout the province.

“With our government’s new plan, Northern Ontario will see more money put into our roads and highways over the next 10 years than in any previous decade,” said Orazietti. “This dedicated fund will mean an acceleration of our Northern highways expansion program, which will see Northern highways such as Highway 17 expanded to four lanes and made safer for Northerners to use.”

In the upcoming 2014 Budget, the government will present a 10-year vision for significant investment in transportation and transit called “Moving Ontario Forward”.

Over the next decade, the provincial government plans to make nearly $29 billion available for transit and transportation infrastructure across the province.

Of the nearly $29 billion, up to $15 billion would be available for investment into the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) and $14 billion would be available for investment in the rest of the province.

“The NDP and Conservatives have no long-term plan to fund transportation infrastructure in Northern Ontario,” said Orazietti. “With our government’s two new dedicated funds for transit and transportation infrastructure—one fund for the GTHA and one for the rest of the province—no one in Sault Ste Marie or Thunder Bay will be expected to pay for subways in Toronto.”

This new plan would not be funded by increases in the gas tax, HST or income taxes on low- and middle-income earners.

Taken from recommendations in the Golden Report, the plan will be funded through three ways: New dedicated revenues tools, Re-purpose existing revenues, and a responsible level of debt financing, if needed.

For example: existing HST collected on gasoline and road diesel taxes would be directed into these dedicated funds to build new transit, roads, bridges and highways around the province.

Additionally, 7.5 cents of the existing gas tax collected would be put into these new transit funds.

MPP Orazietti has twice before introduced Private Member’s Bills, in 2006 and 2011, which would have expanded and improved the quality of Highway 17.

If passed, they would have created additional passing lanes, paved shoulders, rumble strips, rest stops and expanded 4-laning. 

Since 2003, additional provincial investments that have helped build and improve Sault Ste. Marie while also creating short and long-term jobs include:

  • $36.5 million new funding for road and bridge improvements
  • $31.6 million under the Ontario Municipal Partnership Fund (OMPF) in 2014: $17.2 million in new provincial transfers and $14.4 million to upload service costs
  • $10.4 million new provincial gas tax program
  •  $7.3 million new Algoma Public Health Building
  • $6.8 million Conservation Authority infrastructure - source water protection
  • $6.4 million social housing improvements
  • $6.2 million West End Recreation Centre
  • $5.6 million Carmen’s Way
  • $4.7 million Essar Centre
  • $3.1 million Hub Trail and Waterfront Walkway
  • $3.0 million Municipal Infrastructure Investment Initiative (MIII) 2008
  • $2.7 million COMRIF
  • $2.2 million new Emergency Response Centre (EMS)
  • $1.9 million land ambulance annually
  • $1.6 million Recreational Infrastructure Canada/Ontario 2009
  • $1.0 million for 8 new city police officers annually

Since 2003, the Liberal government has built 23 new hospitals, 650 schools built or underway, and 7,900 kilometers of new and repaired highways —the distance from Toronto to Calgary and back.


Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
steelworker 4/15/2014 3:52:52 PM Report

The word for today is "election".
itsme29 4/15/2014 4:04:05 PM Report

u got that right after the "election"is over all were gonna hear is "tax hike suckers"
Mr. Poster 4/15/2014 4:06:40 PM Report

The phrase for today is


I am so sick of these LIBERALS pretending they have money to spend. After the Liberal PARTY ITSELF pays back the huge debt created in the gas plant mess...then and only then do I want to hear about them planning on spending another 29 billion. Bottom line is the 29 billion comes from you and I. Thanks but no thanks David...TOO LITTLE TOO LATE. Desperation has set . It is NOT a WYNNE win affair.
anapeg 4/15/2014 4:14:57 PM Report

NAME THAT TUNE; A rendition of "Can't Touch This" by those Scottish lads Ben Doon and Phil McCrackin.
Me Myself an I 4/15/2014 4:21:09 PM Report

Not just liberals pretending to have money come election time..
Dead End Kid 4/15/2014 4:24:04 PM Report

4.7 million for the Essar Center. What is it they want to do that should have been done when they built it, which wasn't very long ago.
Stevie-E 4/15/2014 4:24:41 PM Report

I would pay more taxes to have safer roads here in the north. Let's start with a freeway from Sudbury to Thunder Bay. We need this put in place across Canada as it was done many years ago in the US.

Why do you think people travel in the US?? Freeway and interstate access! I have driven on farm roads in the US that are in better repair. With freeways, come faster travel speeds, safer roads and more volume. More volume means more money stays in Canada.

Tourism from the US will also boost and many sectors will benefit from this, not just those directly in the tourism industry, either.

People who are bashing this idea are nearsighted and shouldn't be allowed to vote,
razor25 4/15/2014 4:26:07 PM Report

"...which will see Northern highways such as Highway 17 expanded..."

such as? Northern? Sounds far from what I would like to hear. We WILL 4 lane highway 17 from Sault Ste. Marie to Sudbury. That's really what I would love to hear but politicians just make their vague promises so you can't pin them down on anything.
Mr. Poster 4/15/2014 4:29:35 PM Report

It seems the days of politicians BSing us are done like dinner.We no longer believe anything they say or promise. It is a sad reality of the times.
steelworker 4/15/2014 4:32:32 PM Report

After the election Wynne can apply for a job with McSquinty at Harvard.
Tills 4/15/2014 4:40:22 PM Report

Would love the highway...But I cannot vote Liberal again. If my memory serves me right, I remember the promise of no more tax increases!
Hello additional health tax.
Hello HST!
Hello Sky rocketing energy bills!

pastoutla 4/15/2014 4:44:34 PM Report

And as usual He failed to list the 27 Million given to his buddies at St.Marys Paper????
pastoutla 4/15/2014 4:48:33 PM Report

New police 125000.00 per BS
mallet 4/15/2014 5:25:47 PM Report

"Introduced 2 private members bills that would have" would have, could have,
might have, had they passed, but they did not.. So now it looks like there may be an election out comes the list of what the city has got in the past 10 years.. Many moons ago when I was involved with a government, it was not what you did yesterday, but what have you done today that counted.. It does not matter which party wants to be in power, they will always tell you what you want to hear, and as soon as you see their lips moving, they are telling untruths.
ThinkAgain 4/15/2014 5:28:39 PM Report

Why not fix what we already have before making more to worry about.

Duct tape can fix anything but Stupid.
jowo60 4/15/2014 5:31:34 PM Report

David O. You allow the MNR to run your office instead of you controlling your portfolio. Why would anyone believe you. Once the 4 lane high way is complete you MUST allow the MNR to put up berms and bulldoze bridges and culverts out because some US friends from NOTO would not want the traffic near their resort or lake. Visit to see your handy work...
anapeg 4/15/2014 5:53:38 PM Report

I would have to think any serious four laning will go through the communities on highway 11. The weather is far more predictable, the route is shorter and the terrain is flatter. Not to mention there is far more population on 11 compared to 17. The traffic both private and commercial is much heavier on 11 for just the reasons I mentioned.There are trucking companies that forbid their drivers from using 17 for the reasons mentioned.
Riverpilot 4/15/2014 5:56:08 PM Report

Speaking of "nearsightedness", obviously don't realize the costs to establish/construct such an expressway. First of all, most of the U.S. does not have the terrain, or soil/geology conditions that plague our highway infrastructure, nor do we have the population base to support such a project. If there was to be a four lane highway proposed for the Sault to Thunder Bay, one mile of construction would roughly equal 8-10 miles of similar construction in Michigan. It's just not feasable! I have travelled that stretch literally 100's of times over the past decade and am often in disbelief with the low traffic volumes. People can't afford to travel like they once did in the 70's and 80's. From what I've experienced, approximately 70-80% of traffic (in the off tourist season) is commercial traffic. I can see maybe the stretch to Sudbury some day becoming 4 lane but it would be insane to 4-lane the north. It would be like saying we're going to construct a tunnel from Northern Ontario to Michigan beneath Lake Superior!
scottstewy123 4/15/2014 6:09:25 PM Report

last1standing 4/15/2014 6:15:44 PM Report

Hey Dave. Remember the davey home. Cuts,now care gone. Are you looking into it. Bye Dave to you and the liberals.
Hamguy 4/15/2014 6:31:26 PM Report

The money they wasted on those Gas Plants would have gone a long way in making the improvements they are talking about today. I will remember that fiasco when i go to the polling station on voting day in the next Provincial election.
Boomer4771 4/15/2014 6:37:22 PM Report

LIES LIES and more LIES... You want to freeze my wages for another 4 years after freezing them for 2 years already... Screw you Davey O...
soowat 4/15/2014 6:53:56 PM Report

So David go to Calgary and don't come back. Apply the difference to my taxes
MYPOINT 4/15/2014 7:08:55 PM Report

is as follows ....

There are always a lot of dead -end promises coming from those seeking election or re-election. The former have no true idea as to how things are done in politics ( usually ) and the latter do know how things are done in politics and they also know how to make excuses for NOT following through on the promises they made during the election!!

I think it is time for Hwy 17 to be made into a 4 lane from the Sault to Sudbury ( at least ) but I seriously doubt whether I will ever see this happen in my lifetime. Just look at how long it took to just get the highway 4 laned from Echo Bay to here? And that was NOT done correctly due to the bumbling Government.

David, please stop with the promises regarding hospitals. Look at the idiotic building we now have as a hospital. Everyone I have spoken with has said that they should have built another floor onto the hospital and given up on the 'extras' that we did not require (ie. separated hallways for staff only, separated elevators for staff only, high CEO salary, length of the hospital today from the main doors to emergency and the list goes on and on ).

I just wish that there was a re-call method in place so that ALL politicians could be 'fired' if they failed to keep their promises during elections. In fact, could those same promises not be called 'oral contracts' with the voters in this Province? If that is so, then why can we not re-call or cancel those contracts if one of the parties to it fails to keep his or her promises?

I trust NO politicians any longer and most wise people are of the same mind as myself.
troubador 4/15/2014 7:18:08 PM Report

these promises about four lanes from here to Sudbury have been going on since John Rhodes, and thats a long time ago...Believe it when I see it ,if I live that long...
Moonshiner 4/15/2014 7:24:02 PM Report

The odds of them coming up with 29 billion and not raising gas tax are the same as me teaching a horse to fly!
Moonshiner 4/15/2014 7:24:46 PM Report

The odds of them coming up with 29 billion and not raising gas tax are the same as me teaching a horse to fly!
Mr. Poster 4/15/2014 7:51:26 PM Report

The question is...Will Horwath bring down the Liberals ??? She has propped them up twice and will not likely go to the polls unless she thinks she can win. She has to shoulder some blame for letting the Liberals retain power this long.
Sammy1099 4/15/2014 8:14:05 PM Report

Let’s see it took what about ten years to build that bypass around echo bay. I drove on that a couple times, I blinked and I was back on a shit single lane road.

From past experiences by the time the politicians and bureaucrats decide to build it who’s going to build it etc..Oh lets not forget the overpriced consultants. Then you have all the crooked politicians and civil servants all wanting kickbacks. That leads to massive cost overruns, it winds up costing ten times more then expected. Then they cancel the project $10billion wasted but hey some politicians and bureaucrats have some nice new houses and fatter offshore accounts.

I’ll be optimistic let’s say they do actually build it. I bet within a year some jackass will build his house on the side of it and expect everybody to reduce their speed to 50km/Hr.

palace 4/15/2014 8:34:12 PM Report

Yes I can smell an election...I believe this as much as I believe I and all tax payers are not paying for those gas plants. Signed by a former Liberal supporter but "NOT ANY MORE!!!"
pastoutla 4/15/2014 8:48:17 PM Report

Ehh Sammy unforthanatly Ime a jackass and live on black shit road
pastoutla 4/15/2014 8:55:54 PM Report

27 Million given to Porco;Avery:Henson.Acton....Friends of OOO
Sammy1099 4/15/2014 9:02:31 PM Report


If you build a house on the trans Canada highway and expect traffic to slow, then yea you are a jackass. It didn’t occur to you that a highway would have traffic when you built your house? I don’t want to be having to slow to 50km/hr every time a dam house is beside the highway. If you don’t like it move your dam house. Christ it’s not like there is a shortage of land around here.
Mr. Poster 4/15/2014 9:07:01 PM Report

They do not allow you to build a house on any new 4 lane highway. You have to enter and exit via a secondary road that runs parallel to the 4 lane that has designated exit and entry points.
OMGWTF 4/15/2014 9:18:47 PM Report

Better to give the money to the Northern cities like SSM to improve our infrastructure, roads and services. That would create local jobs, lower our taxes and improve our ability to attract businesses to the city to create employment and improve the tax base.
Prrrrrrr 4/15/2014 10:29:30 PM Report

I'd rather have a train to Southern ON or at least Sudbury!!!!
fatafr 4/15/2014 10:30:57 PM Report

When is the Province and our 1st nations neighbour going to get together and complete the 1.6 km of by-pass at the corner of 2nd Line East and Black Rd ???
Seriously, this is a joke and it's time there was more cooperation from both sides on this ridiculous and unnecessary delay.
Of course, isn't it always about the money ???
Mr. Poster 4/15/2014 11:17:05 PM Report

Look at how long it too to get the four lane through the reserve .Don't hold your breath waiting on the last and needed link.This is something David O and Hayes could have been working on along with encouragement from city council.
ti-guy 4/15/2014 11:26:20 PM Report

Everyone please read what hamguy4 and mypoint4 have posted. These two are the best responses so far, imo....
Dara 4/16/2014 9:11:37 AM Report

The highway and Toronto transit will be built with "new dedicated revenue tools"

Thats a new tax right?, sounds like a brand new one.

And it will be a different one for northern and southern Ontario, so we don't feel ripped off paying for Toronto transit.

The only thing left to see is how many people they will trick into buying this.
RELAC 4/16/2014 9:15:45 AM Report

I don't know whose politicians are doing the most but thunder bay roads are now 4 laned from the Bay to Almost Nipigon. Obviously their provincial leaders did not wait for anyone to get started. Dave O isn't doing squat for us. While we continue to fight to just get 4 lanes to heyden other communities have hundreds of miles completed.
MikeyJ 4/16/2014 10:39:13 AM Report

I don't live in the Sault anymore and now live out west. Having travelled all of the Trans-Canada I can say without a doubt that the stretch of it between Sault Ste Marie and the Manitoba border is the worst stretch of the highway in Canada. Aside from the small stretch leading up to Golden, BC nothing even compares. It's unfortunate and more lives will continue to be lost on an unsafe stretch of road, but I don't see it ever being 4 laned in out lifetime.
susiesayers 4/16/2014 10:45:25 AM Report

fix the roads that are tearing up all the vehicles . The holes in the roads are awful.
My daughter had something come off of her van - that could have caused an accident.Her kids were not in the van, but i was.
habsfan 4/16/2014 11:11:05 AM Report

When we talk about four laning everyone sees the divide of the two lanes. Why not leave the existing highway and make it four lanes with no divide. It would be more feasible and less expensive. Also put in the rumble strips so people cant fall asleep.
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
Advertising | Membership | Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | About | Contact Us | Feedback

Copyright ©2014 - All rights reserved