Provincial Investment to Public Transit Improvements in Waterloo Region

Published on

NEWS March 26, 2019

Elmira — Ontario’s Government is working for the people to improve transit. Today, the opening of $1.62 billion in shared funding for commuter-friendly projects was announced. A total of nearly $467,530,000 in shared Federal-Provincial-Municipal funding could be invested in Waterloo Region.

“Our communities count on commuter infrastructure to get people to work and home again to their families,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Infrastructure. ”Our government’s investment will make public transit infrastructure better, safer, and more accessible.”

On April 2, Waterloo Region and 84 other eligible municipalities located outside of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) will be able to nominate their most critical public transit projects for consideration under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP). This stream will fund construction, expansion and improvement of public transit networks.

The first intake of the Public Transit stream of the 10-year infrastructure program will unlock up to $1.62 billion in joint provincial and federal funding for critical public transit outside the GTHA. In total, 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.

“This is much needed support for our public transit network in Waterloo Region and my own riding,” said Mike Harris MPP for Kitchener-Conestoga. “This multi-year funding will help improve and extend transit service to expanding communities in west Kitchener, while offering those in the rural townships better access to the urban centres.”

Municipalities can easily apply for all ICIP funding streams using the Grants Ontario website, a ‘one-window’ source that handles application intake, review, nomination, reporting and transfer payment management processes.

“Our government is listening and has heard the infrastructure needs of our municipalities,” said Minister McNaughton. “We are committed to cutting red tape for local governments, while funding local infrastructure priorities in the province.”


  • The Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program is a $30 billion, 10-year infrastructure program cost-shared between federal, provincial and municipal governments. Ontario’s share per project will be up to 33.33 per cent, or $10.2 billion spread across four streams:

1. Rural and Northern
2. Public Transit
3. Green
4. Community, Culture and Recreation.

  • Funding is allocated to transit systems based on their share of total transit ridership in Ontario as per the 2015 Canadian Urban Transit Association Fact Book. This allocations-based funding model was set by the federal government.
  • The application intake for the first ICIP stream, the Rural and Northern stream, was opened for an eight-week period on March 18. It is open to approximately 500 municipalities and Indigenous communities with populations under 100,000.
  • More information on future intakes, including for those municipalities inside the GTHA, will be available soon. Intakes for other streams will launch later this year.


“The Ontario government is a strong supporter of public transit. Through this program, we are funding public transit projects in 85 municipalities across the province. Today’s announcement shows we are delivering on our commitment to fund construction, expansion and improvement of public transit networks, providing more transit options for people.”
- Jeff Yurek, The Honourable Minister of Transportation

“Ontario transit agencies are pleased that the intake process has begun for the transit stream of ICIP funding. Municipalities across the province are ready to build transformative transit projects that make a difference to people’s daily lives.”
- Karen Cameron, CEO of the Ontario Public Transit Association.

“The Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) welcomes the launch of provincial and federal funding for many local public transit systems across Ontario. Public transit connects communities and economies by helping people access jobs and critical services. The launch of this funding is one important step toward greater investment in all of our municipal transit systems.”
- Jamie McGarvey, President of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario

Matthew Stubbings, Office of MPP Mike Harris, [email protected], 519-580-8291.