April 11, 2019

Ontario Budget 2019 Commits $144 Billion for Infrastructure over Next Decade

Ontario Finance Minister Vic Fedeli released his first budget today, outlining the key priorities of the Progressive Conservative government under Premier Doug Ford.

Budget 2019: Protecting What Matters Most, focuses on returning the province back to a balanced budget by 2023-24, while making strategic investments to grow the economy and protect critical services.

The path to balance will rely on economic growth and restraining expenditures to one per cent of growth. Many key highlights of Budget 2019 have already been announced or were contained in the party’s election platform, including restructuring of local health networks, education reforms and “Open for Business” initiatives.

From an infrastructure standpoint, the government has committed to spend $144 billion over 10 years, which averages out to just slightly less than the previous government, though the budget document noted actual spending was routinely below planned spending and that the figures released today represent a more accurate view of what will be spent.

The signature piece of the infrastructure spend is on expanding public transit, which was announced on Wednesday (View CCPPP’s News Release on that announcement here).

The budget confirms the government will use P3s and look at innovative partnerships with the private sector to deliver on its infrastructure program.

Below is a breakdown of key Budget 2019 details:

10-Year Infrastructure Breakdown

  • $66.7 billion for public transit
  • $22.1 billion for highway infrastructure
  • $1.7 billion for other transportation and planning
  • $27 billion for hospitals
  • $3.3 billion for other health projects
  • $19.5 billion for education infrastructure
  • $3.1 billion for post-secondary infrastructure
  • $2.5 billion for social infrastructure
  • $4.8 billion for justice infrastructure
  • $12.8 billion for “other” infrastructure

$19.4 billion of the above $163 billion+ comes from other partner funding. This list also includes all existing capital expenditures and not just new projects.

Below are key sectoral highlights referred to in the budget related to the industry:


  • $28.5 billion for the Ontario transit expansion plan for the GTHA, including:
    • $10.9-billion Ontario Line (relief line), delivered by 2027
    • $5.6-billion Yonge North Subway Extension
    • $5.5-billion three-stop Scarborough Subway Extension, delivered by 2030
    • $4.7-billion Eglinton Crosstown West Extension to Pearson Airport, delivered by 2031, and
    • Exploration of Sheppard Subway Extension to McCowan Station
  • $1.2 billion for Phase 2 Ottawa LRT
  • $1 billion for Hamilton LRT
  • $1.62 billion for 85 eligible municipalities located outside of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) to construct, expand and improve public transit networks. In total, the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP) will unlock up to $30 billion in combined federal, provincial, and local investments in Ontario communities as part of a 10-year bilateral agreement
  • GO Expansion continuation including working with the private sector on electrification of core segments
  • Commitment to Transit Oriented Development after success of Mimico GO and Woodbine Stations
  • Legislation this spring to upload new transit projects and expansions from the TTC. Subject to negotiations, legislation in 2020 would upload existing TTC subway infrastructure
  • Pause all investment in High Speed Rail and present a Southwestern Ontario transportation plan in fall 2019


  • Highway 11/17 and Highway 69 twinning
  • Highway 401 expansion to six lanes from Tilbury to London and expanding Credit River Bridge
  • Highway 7/115 replacement and restoration of multiple bridges
  • Expanding the Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network (AVIN) and launch a “wintertech” stream to test mobility products and services in severe winter weather conditions


  • $17 billion over 10 years for new hospitals and expansions
  • Cutting red tape to make it easier to build long-term care facilities


  • $13 billion over 10 years for new and renovated schools


  • Commitment to Darlington refurbishment, Bruce Power and keeping Pickering open until at least 2024
  • Support of Watay power and East-West Tie project to connect northern and Indigenous communities to the grid

Skilled Trades

  • Promote skilled trades in K-12
  • Lower journeyman to apprenticeship ratios
  • Replace the Ontario College of Trades legislation
  • Create a Northern Ontario Skilled Labour Internship and an Indigenous Internship program

Other Notables

  • Consolidate data on infrastructure spending across all ministries
  • Support for Infrastructure Ontario advisory services internationally
  • Expressions of Interest for a new vision for Ontario Place
  • Sell surplus real estate when it makes sense
  • Standing up to “Buy America” legislation and propose proportional responses where necessary
  • Support for Ring of Fire
  • $315 million over five years for shovel-ready broadband projects in rural and remote areas
  • Ban of government employees and agencies from buying tickets or sponsoring events where keynotes are politicians

The full 2019 Ontario budget can be accessed at http://budget.ontario.ca/2019/index.html.