Glossary

Alternative Financing and Procurement (AFP): The use of private sector involvement to design, finance and/or build infrastructure while ensuring appropriate public control.

Arterial Road: A high-volume urban road with at least four lanes, having a typical speed limit of 50 to 60 km/hour and typical spacing between traffic signals of 200 to 400 metres. The typical volume of an arterial road is less than 20,000 vehicles/day and it connects to collector roads, other arterial roads and expressways.

Automated Guided Transit (AGT): A type of rapid transit that uses a fully grade-separated rightof- way, which can be elevated or located in a segregated at-grade corridor. The complete separation from traffic, including at intersections, allows for the use of fully automated vehicles as well as higher service frequency, speed, capacity, reliability and service flexibility than non-grade separated Light Rail Transit (LRT). The capacity of AGT is typically 10,000 to 25,000 passengers per hour, peak direction. Average speed: 20 to 35 km/h with stations one to two km apart depending on area density. Example: Vancouver Skytrain.

Bus Rapid Transit (BRT): Similar to light rail transit operating predominantly in protected rights-ofway, separate from other traffic, but using advanced bus technology. Also includes buses operating in mixed traffic on controlled-access expressways that employ congestion management such as tolls, thereby allowing the buses to maintain high average speeds. The capacity of BRT is typically 2,000 to 10,000 passengers per hour, peak direction. Average speed: 15 to 40 km/h depending on station spacing, with higher speeds possible on grade-separated rights-of-way on controlled access highways. Example: Vancouver 98B Line (Richmond section), Ottawa Transitway system.

Controlled-Access Expressway: A high-speed, high-capacity highway with at least four lanes and grade-separated with access to the facility limited to ramps and interchanges. A controlled-access expressway has a typical speed limit of 60 to 100 km/h with daily traffic greater than 20,000 vehicles. Dedicated Walking or Bicycling Facility: A sidewalk, path or traffic lane that is reserved for use by pedestrians and/or bicyclists only.

Express Rail: High-speed trains, typically electric, serving primarily longer-distance regional trips with two-way all-day service. Regional Express service could have a capacity of 25,000 to 40,000 passengers per hour in the peak direction with trains operating in completely separated rights-of-way, with as little as 5 minutes between trains. Average speed: 50 to 80 km/h with stations two to five km apart. Example: Paris Region Réseau Express Regional (RER).

Gateway Hub: All mobility hubs that are not Anchor Hubs. Gateway Hubs are identified in Schedules 1 and 2 of the RTP. (For more information see the backgrounder “Mobility Hubs, December 2008”).

Greater Golden Horseshoe: The geographic area designated as the Greater Golden Horseshoe Growth Plan Area in Ontario Regulation 416/05.

Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA): The metropolitan region encompassing the City of Toronto, the four surrounding Regional Municipalities (Durham, Halton, Peel and York) and the City of Hamilton.

Headway: The scheduled time between successive transit vehicles on a given route.

High Occupancy Toll (HOT) Lane: On an expressway, an HOT lane is a High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane which single drivers are also allowed to use by paying a toll. Tolls can vary depending on time of day and demand, in order to regulate the flow of traffic. HOT lanes allow for a better utilization of HOV lanes while generating revenue. HOT lanes can also be opened to buses.

High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lane: A roadway lane designated for use only by vehicles with a specified minimum number of occupants, usually two or three. HOV lanes can also be opened to buses.

High-Order Transit: Includes all forms of rapid transit (see definition below). The term Higher-Order Transit is often used interchangeably.
Intelligent Transportation System (ITS): The use of real-time computer/communications/ information technology for advanced, traffic-responsive, area-wide traffic control and to provide information which allows transportation providers to optimize transportation system operations and enable travellers to use the system more efficiently and effectively, while also increasing their convenience and ease of travelling.

Intensification Corridors: Intensification areas along major roads, arterials or higher-order transit corridors that have the potential to provide a focus for higher density mixed-use development consistent with planned transit service levels. [Source: Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, 2006.]

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design): A green building rating system, since expanded to rate neighbourhood development. Buildings can qualify for four levels of certification related to environmentally sustainable construction. Certification is granted by the Green Building Council based on an application documenting compliance with the rating system requirements, as well as paying registration and certification fees.

Light Rail Transit (LRT): Streetcar trains (up to three or four cars per train) operating on protected rights-of-way adjacent to or in the medians of roadways or rail rights-of-way. Generally at-grade, possibly with some sections operating in mixed-traffic and/or in tunnels. Electric power is normally via an overhead trolley or pantograph. Capacity of 2,000 to 10,000 passengers per hour in the peak direction, with higher capacities where there are significant stretches of completely segregated rights-of-way. Average speed: 15 to 35 km/h depending on station spacing and extent of grade separation. Examples: Calgary and Edmonton LRT systems.

Major Transit Station Areas: The area including and around any existing or planned higher-order transit station within a settlement area, or the area including and around a major bus depot in a urban core. Station areas generally are defined as the area within an approximate 500 metre radius of a transit station, representing about a 10-minute walk. [Source: Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, 2006.]

Major Trip Generator: A facility or area which generates significant volumes of passenger and/or goods/services trips.

Mobility Hub: Major transit station areas, as defined in the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, that are particularly significant given the level of transit service that is planned for them and the development potential around them. They are places of connectivity between regional rapid transit services, and also places where different modes of transportation, from walking to high-speed rail, come together seamlessly. They have, or are planned to have an attractive, intensive concentration of employment, living, shopping and enjoyment around a major transit station. To be identified as a mobility hub, a major transit station area must be located at the interchange of two or more current or planned regional rapid transit lines as identified in the RTP, and be forecasted in the RTP to have 4,500 or more combined boardings and alightings in the morning peak period in 2031. In addition, these areas are generally forecasted to achieve or have the potential to achieve a minimum density of approximately 10,000 people and jobs within an 800 metre radius. The primary major transit station area associated with an urban growth centre are also identified as mobility hubs, as are Pearson Airport and Union Station due to their roles as the GTHA’s primary international gateways. (For more information see the backgrounder “Mobility Hubs, December 2008”).

Mobility Index: a set of indicators, derived from the goals and objectives of the RTP, developed to gauge and monitor the progress and success of the RTP as Strategies are implemented and investments are made. The indicators will cover a range of goals and objectives that support a high quality of life, a thriving sustainable and protected environment, and a strong, prosperous and competitive economy.

Modal Split: The proportion of total person trips using each of the various different modes of transportation. The proportion using any one mode is its modal split.

Queue-Jump Lanes: Short roadway lanes provided on the approaches to signalized intersections which allow buses or cyclists to by-pass queued traffic and enter the intersection before other traffic when the traffic light turns green.

Rapid Transit: Transit service separated partially or completely from general vehicular traffic and therefore able to maintain higher levels of speed, reliability and vehicle productivity than can be achieved by transit vehicles operating in mixed traffic.

Regional Rail: Diesel-electric or electric trains serving primarily longer-distance regional trips; approximate capacity at 10-minute headways of 5,000 to 20,000 persons per hour peak direction (pphpd); service can be enhanced by electrification, enabling better train performance (acceleration) and therefore higher average speeds even with relatively close station spacing. Average speed: 30 km/h with two km station spacing; 50 km/h with wider station spacing or electrified trains. Example: GO Transit rail system.

Regional Rapid Transit Network: The network of Express Rail, Regional Rail, Subway and Other Rapid Transit services identified in Schedules 1 and 2 of the RTP.

Regional Transportation System: The regional rapid transit and highway network identified in Schedules 1 and 2 of the RTP.

Settlement Areas: Urban and rural settlement areas within municipalities (such as cities, towns, villages and hamlets) where: a) development is concentrated and which have a mix of land uses; and b) lands have been designated in an official plan for development over the long-term planning horizon provided for in the Provincial Policy Statement, 2005. Where there are no lands that have been designated over the long-term, the settlement area may be no larger than the area where development is concentrated. [Source: Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, 2006.]

Short Sea Shipping: Port-to-port goods movement on the Great Lakes. In the RTP context, these would likely be mainly among ports serving the GTHA or between these ports and transfer points to/from ocean-going vessels downstream from the St. Lawrence Seaway.

Specialized Transit: A door-to-door service for passengers with special needs. Specialized transit riders must meet specified eligibility criteria and are required to book their trips in advance.

Streetcars: Urban rail vehicles circulating at low speeds (e.g. 10 to 25 km/h) in mixed traffic, with closely spaced stops (e.g. 200 metres). Examples exist in Toronto, Vienna, Prague and Melbourne. Generally known as “trams” outside of North America.

Subway: High-capacity, heavy rail transit that is fully-grade separated from other traffic, predominantly underground. Capacity in the range of 25,000 to 40,000 passengers per hour in the peak direction, with frequency as low as 90 seconds between trains. Average speed: 25 to 50 km/h. Example: Toronto subway.

Transit Agency: One of the following public transit operators in the GTHA: GO Transit; Hamilton Street Railway; Burlington Transit; Oakville Transit; Milton Transit; Mississauga Transit; Brampton Transit; York Region Transit; Toronto Transit Commission or Durham Region Transit.

Transit Catchment Area: The area around each transit station that contains most origins (e.g. home) and destinations (e.g. work or school) for transit users. The catchment area varies by the type of transit being accessed, the means by which it is being accessed, and by the surrounding urban fabric. For example, a downtown subway station will have a different-sized catchment area for a pedestrian than would a suburban GO train station.

Transportation Demand Management (TDM): A program of incentives which influence whether, when, where and how people travel, and encourage them to make more efficient use of the transportation system.

Transportation System: A system comprised of corridors and rights-of-way for the movement of people and goods, and associated transportation facilities including transit stops and stations, cycle lanes, bus lanes, High Occupancy Vehicle lanes, rail facilities, park-and-ride lots, service centres, rest stops, vehicle inspection stations, inter-modal terminals, harbours, and associated facilities such as storage and maintenance [Source: Provincial Policy Statement, 2005.]

Urban Growth Centres (UGC): Centres designated in the provincial Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, 2006. The Growth Plan designates 25 UGCs in the Greater Golden Horseshoe, of which 17 are in the GTHA.

Parking Space Levy: A daily levy charged to a property owner based on the amount of non-residential, off-street parking spaces owned. Pricing is typically implemented on an area basis in order to mitigate tax avoidance but is her presented as a stall per day rate for clarity.

Income Tax: Income tax is levied on personal taxable income (for example, employment income, capital income from investments, pension payments, income from small businesses).

Corporate Income Tax: A corporate income tax is a tax that is applied to the income base of all companies that file corporate income tax returns within a designated region. The tax can be designated to a transportation initiative. The tax is in addition to the corporate income taxes already collected.

Vehicle Registration Fee: A fee is paid by vehicle owners when registering a new vehicle and renewing that registration annually. The vehicle fee is set in advance and is not generally related to use.

Utility Levy: A transportation utility levy is a monthly fee collected from residences and businesses within a region. The fee can be implemented as a fixed dollar amount that is collected through regular utility bills.

Transit Fare Increase: An additional cost per trip on public transit

Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Special Assessment Districts: Special District Charge/TIFs work by leveraging future property tax revenue increases to finance current infrastructure projects. The mechanism dedicates the incremental tax revenue between the assessed value of designated areas (“TIF zones”) prior to the development and its assessed value after the developments are completed. By doing this, future tax gains are used to finance the present costs of eligible improvements in designated areas.

Property Tax: A percentage based tax applied on the value of property owned by individuals and organizations. Property taxes are a common revenue tool for municipal and other levels of government to use to pay for a variety of programs and services

Parking Sales Tax: A percentage increase in the cost of charged parking, which would be implemented above current taxes charged on parking

New Vehicle Sales Tax: A new vehicle sales tax is a fee paid by owners of new vehicles at the time of first registration. The fee is charged at registration rather than at the time of sale, since purchasers would otherwise have an incentive to buy new vehicles in other jurisdictions.

Land Value Capture: Land value capture (LVC) attempts to capture a portion of the increase (or uplift) in property values associated with improvements to public infrastructure or services often related to transportation. Developments around transit stations benefit from greater accessibility and often have higher land values. The incremental value can be captured through contribution agreements secured with developers for up-front contributions or periodic contributions paid over the duration of a project.

Land Transfer Tax: A percentage tax payable at time of purchase, based on the amount paid for properties.

Hotel & Accommodation Levy: Users of a hotel or other form of applicable accommodation would pay a fixed amount on a per night basis.

Highway Tolls: Motorists pay a toll per kilometre travelled on designated highways.

High Occupancy Tolls: High Occupancy Tolls (HOTs) are a charge on single occupancy vehicles who wish to use high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes otherwise restricted to vehicles carrying two or more people (typically found on expressways). Vehicles with two or more people use the lanes for free. The tool requires the existence, creation or designation of high occupancy lanes and a method to collect tolls

Fuel Tax: An additional excise tax levied on the sale of transportation fuels, calculated by volume purchased. The tax could be structured as a flat rate per litre of fuel purchased, or a flat rate on the purchase value of fuel (ad valorem tax otherwise known as a percentage increase

Employer / Employee Payroll Tax: A tax automatically withheld from an employee’s pay by employers to remit to the government. It can be structured as a flat tax or as a percentage of gross pay in a given period

Driver’s Licence Tax: The tool entails a levy charged to drivers upon issuance or renewal of their driver’s license

Development Charges (DCs): Development charges (DCs) are one-time levies imposed on new developments and eligible re-developments used to pay for growth-related infrastructure. DCs are determined by formula, and based on the type of dwelling/property

Cordon Charge: Motorists are charged a toll for entering and/or exiting certain cordons (or zones). Multiple cordons can be established with tolls set and collected for each. Charges can be levied at all times. Targeted peak time charges have been a popular practice. Cordon charging is seen as a demand management tool rather than just a revenue tool.

Carbon Tax (Emissions Tax): A carbon tax is a tax levied on the emissions of carbon dioxide created from the use of gasoline and other fossil fuels. These taxes are typically charged based on a price per tonne of emitted carbon dioxide. Since these emissions are closely related to the carbon content of fuels, the charge can be levied as a fixed tax per litre of fuel either at the production or consumption stage.

Car Rental Fee: A car rental fee is a daily charge levied on the cost of renting a vehicle that is dedicated to transportation funding within a specified region. The charge can be a fixed fee or a percentage of the total cost of renting the vehicle and can be collected by rental car companies on behalf of the regional transportation authority.

Auto Insurance Tax: An auto insurance tax payable by drivers when making auto insurance payments. Proceeds are dedicated to funding transportation initiatives. The tax may be collected by the auto insurance company on behalf of the regional transportation authority. The tax can take the form of either a fixed monthly fee per vehicle or per driver, or can be a smart charge (variable)

Vehicle Kilometres Travelled (VKT) Charge: Motorists would pay a charge for every kilometre that they travel within a designated area or in all areas. A driver’s VKT is tracked through odometer readings or GPS tracking.

Sales Tax: A sales tax is a percentage rate applied on the sale price of goods and services. A sales tax has the advantage of a broad tax base, which generally produces high revenue yields.

Transit Fare Restructuring: The objective of fare restructuring is to better align the fare structure with the value of the services received by transit users (i.e. user-pay benefit principle). This can be done by introducing peak/off-peak pricing, paid parking, as well as distance-based fares.