Go to the Globe and Mail homepage

Jump to main navigationJump to main content

Road Sage
Road Sage

Road Sage

Traffic chaos? We have a cure for that Add to ...

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) recently released a controversial report that showed traffic congestion around Toronto costs Canada $3.3-billion and that long commutes and air pollution hamper productivity. It suggests government consider implementing toll lanes, taxes and a Singapore-style charge on roads leading into the city centre.

More Related to this Story

Thanks to tireless investigative efforts, Road Sage has acquired a section of the report hitherto hidden from the public. It explores possible traffic solutions not just for Toronto but for the entire country.

OECD Report: Case Scenarios For Transit Renewal

As mentioned in Section A, Paragraph. 3, it is critical that municipalities cut the economic fallout caused by traffic congestion.

Experts suggested making public transit more attractive. Researchers countered that this was impossible, maintaining that Canadian buses and subways were to public transit what the songs of Christopher Cross were to rock music - feeble, erratic and hard to endure.

Experts suggested raising taxes to pay for better public transit. Deemed politically impossible. In a recent survey, Canadians who were given the choice between paying more taxes and losing a leg chose "lose two legs."

Researchers urged experts to think outside the box. Here are the ground-breaking solutions they have proposed:


Drivers are accustomed to paying tolls on bridges and these are, in fact, the only type of toll that most do not mind paying. Bridges provide an obvious "value-add" to motorists because bridges stop cars and people from plummeting into rivers, lakes and oceans.

Solution: Toronto civic workers should dig a 50-metre wide moat around the entire city. This way, every road or street going into the metropolis would have a bridge and every bridge would have a toll. Drivers will happily pay these bridge fees and Toronto will earn big revenue.

Traffic Tontines:

Beginning in the 17th century it was common for speculators to invest a lump sum into a "tontine." As each investor died his or her share was disbursed to the others until only a single living investor remained and said investment accrued fully to the survivor.

Solution: When a Torontonian receives his or her driver's license he or she will pay a $250 fee into the Canadian National Driving Tontine (Tontine Driving Nationale Canadienne). The city will hold weekly "Tontine Tuesdays" during which time it will be legal to drive recklessly, road race, and smash other cars. These will thin congestion by eliminating "excess" drivers. The number of motorists will shrink until there is only a single driver left who will win the tontine and be given the choice between being made Premier or getting a Subway sandwich franchise.

Commuter Engagement Selection Service Pool (CESSPool):

One of the primary reasons that people drive is that public transport exposes them to what they refer to as "other people." The incidence of encountering urine (not one's own), hearing someone sing Christmas carols in July or sitting in another person's discarded lunch greatly diminishes when not using public transit. Drivers refer to this as "privacy."

Solution: Force motorists to pick up random strangers and car pool them to wherever they wish to go. This will make driving a more personally invasive ordeal than public transit. Drivers will receive carbon tax credits for picking up soap-averse passengers. Commuters picking up anyone ranting will receive coffee coupons.


Calgary (pronounced Cow-gal-ree) is located in southern Alberta and a centre for oil and gas. This municipality has a great deal of revenue. OECD research shows that Calgary has a Tim Horton's that serves crullers sprinkled with gold dust, that every home boasts at least one platinum toilet and that it is against the law to sell chicken wings for less that $6 per wing in Calgary because Calgarians want to be able to boast "Calgary: Home of the World's Most Expensive Chicken Wing."

Solution: Toronto was rich but now is poor. Running into Toronto is like running into someone you used to date when they are cashing in empties for Kraft Dinner money. The OECD recommends taxing Calgarians and then taking the revenue and applying it to Toronto in order to solve traffic congestion problems. Apparently, Calgarians are used to this practice.

Summary: After extensive investigation, OECD researchers determined that offering Canadians a choice between a driving commute and a public transit commute was similar to offering a person the choice between hanging and drowning. Both are painful and both provide the same outcome.

Conclusion: Further study warranted.

Follow on Twitter: @aclarkcomedy


More Related to this Story

In the know

Most popular video »


More from The Globe and Mail

Most Popular Stories