Clarington asks Ontario to make Hwy. 407 toll-free for trucks

Clarington — a municipality Durham Region, east of Toronto — wants Ontario to make Highway 407 a toll-free route for trucks hauling aggregates through its jurisdiction.

 “Let’s get these heavy trucks off our rural roads. The disruption they cause to our residents and, quite frankly, the destruction of our local roads is unreasonable. These big, heavy trucks want to get from point A to point B as quickly as possible, so Highway 407 makes all the sense in the world,” Clarington Mayor Adrian Foster said in a news release.

(Photo: istock)

The municipality said it does not wish to restrict commercial traffic to specific roads or times but needs to protect the safety of local residents in these neighbourhoods. The Ontario government is prioritizing new housing development in the region and the trucks are delivering construction materials to sites west of the municipality.

At a meeting last month, town council approved a resolution from Coun. Granville Anderson requesting that the province “make an alternate route available, namely the 407, as free to use for trucks carrying aggregates in North Durham for the period of one year.”

“We have to be mindful that it affects quality of life.”

Granville Anderson, Clarington councillor

Anderson told that he is not against commerce and did not want to ban trucks. “We have to be mindful that it affects quality of life,” he said.

After residents complained about trucks using Concession Road 6, council banned trucks on Concession Roads 6 and 7 between Townline Road and Bowmanville Avenue in April 2022.

Anderson said the trucks instead moved onto Enniskillen, which is Regional Road 3.

Delay start times

“The problem was sent to another community, which isn’t an answer. Ideally the 407 is not being used, that would be the best route for them to go on,” he said. “They wouldn’t be disturbing anybody. But the province will have to agree to play ball, I don’t know if they will. But nothing tried, nothing done.”

The councillor said the residents of Enniskillen “are pretty reasonable folks” but it would help if hours are restricted. “The trucks start rolling at 5 a.m. and it is disruptive. Delay the truck traffic a couple of hours, maybe start at 7 a.m.”

“Perhaps they could start late on Saturdays and let people rest,” Anderson added.

Last year, Ontario officially removed all tolls from highways 412 and 418, a pair of north-south routes that connect Highway 401 and the tolled Highway 407 just east of Toronto.

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