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Drivers in Durham Region See Toll Rate Freeze on Highways 412 and 418

April 28, 2021
3 mins
A woman is seen smiling in the rear-view mirror as she drives down a highway

The Ontario Ministry of Transportation is extending the toll rate freeze on the province’s publicly owned highways 412 and 418 for two more years.

For drivers who cruise along either of the two highways, they won’t need to worry about being charged to use them up until May 31, 2023, as the province continues to review and explore how road tolls can meet evolving transportation needs.

Meanwhile, toll rates for the provincially owned highway 407 remain temporarily frozen until May 31, 2021. Highways 407, 412, and 418 are often referred to as highway 407 East, which is separate from the privately owned highway 407 ETR (Express Toll Route). Toll rates on the highway 407 ETR are neither impacted nor included in the province’s latest announcement.

"Freezing toll rates will reduce the cost of transportation and provide much needed financial relief for families and businesses using these highways," said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation in a press release. "An increase in toll rates is the last thing Ontarians need to worry about as they face new pressures during the pandemic."

The province’s April 2021 report dubbed, “Tolling Analysis Report: Highways 407, 412, and 418”, states these highways are expected to generate an estimated $2.9 billion in tolling revenues until 2045, with the tolls raised from highways 412 and 418 accounting for $580 million, or 20%, of that amount. Since 2017, tolling these highways have generated approximately $160 million in revenue for the provincial government.

Highway 407 East is comprised of three connected sections: the highway 407 mainline that runs east-west from 407 ETR near Brock Road in Pickering to the highway 35/115 interchange. Highways 412 and 418 are both north-south highways that connect to highways 401 and 407 ETR.

A total of 38.2 million vehicles have been recorded on highways 407, 412, and 418 since the start of tolling (February 2017 to March 2020), with 93.2% of them being “light vehicles” (private passenger cars and light duty trucks). Roughly 44% of these trips have used highways 412 and 418, either exclusively or to access highway 407, the report states.

The toll rates drivers pay for using these highways depends on the time of day they drive on them. For example, on weekdays during “peak periods” such as morning and evening rush hours, drivers of cars and light duty trucks typically pay 29.66 cents per kilometre. On weekdays during off-peak periods, drivers are typically charged 19.43 cents per kilometre. Current toll rates on highways 407 East, 412, and 418 are, on average, 40% less compared with the 407 ETR, the province says.

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Liam Lahey

Liam Lahey is a versatile marketer with experience as a staff and freelance writer for many business and technology publications and newspapers. He previously worked as the editor and media spokesperson for RATESDOTCA, handling home, auto, and travel insurance topics.

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