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CAA: Hwy 401 Near T.O. One of North America’s Worst Bottlenecks

Hwy. 401 across the top of Toronto is the most congested artery in Canada and one of the worst bottlenecks in North America, costing travellers time and money, according to a new study by the Canadian Automobile Association.

Canada’s top 20 most congested traffic bottlenecks cover just 65 km, but they collectively cost drivers over 11.5 million hours and drain an extra 22 million litres of fuel per year, reports CAA in a study titled Grinding to a Halt, Evaluating Canada’s Worst Bottlenecks.

Toronto placed 10 bottlenecks in the top 20.  Montreal placed five, Vancouver placed four and Quebec City placed one.

Hwy 401 between Yonge and Hwy 427 is the most congested bottleneck in Canada and in the top 10 of Canadian and U.S. highways. The DVP/404 between Don Mills and Finch was second and Hwy. 40 in Montreal between Blvd Pie-IX and Hwy 520, rounding out the top three in Canada.

In terms of total hours of delay, the 401 bottleneck compares with the worst traffic in the New York metro area, while the Highway 40 bottleneck compares with the worst bottleneck in Boston, says CAA.

Other Canadian markets such as Calgary, Edmonton, Regina, Winnipeg, Ottawa and Halifax also experience serious traffic delays.

“Traffic congestion is a major source of stress for Canadians. Our study concludes that traffic bottlenecks affect Canadians in every major urban market, increasing commute times by as much as 50 percent,” said Jeff Walker, vice-president of Public Affairs for CAA National. “Reducing these bottlenecks will increase the quality of life for millions of Canadians (and save) millions in fuel costs and reduce greenhouse gases.”

Studies show that bottlenecks are the single biggest contributor to road delay, far outpacing traffic accidents, inclement weather and construction.

The full report and complete list of 20 worst bottlenecks can be accessed here.

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