How to kill business in the GTA – host the Pan Am Games.

Hold onto your hats, it’s rant time on the Blog today.

I recently read the traffic forecasts from “Officials” for the Pan Am games – I suppose I wouldn’t want anyone to know my exact title if I was forecasting traffic this either.

As a selfish, business lawyer, I of course first looked at the highways I travel frequently. The forecast for the QEW (our firm is at 427/QEW) is an additional 10 minutes of time East Bound into Toronto. Seriously? You’re going to take away an entire lane of traffic and you’re only going to impact my commute 10 minutes. I highly doubt it. The day before I wrote this blog it rained during my morning commute. The commute jumped 30 minutes. With all lanes open. There is no way 10 additional minutes is accurate when you eliminate a lane entirely.

I note in one news report “police have also being trying to get local businesses to allow employees to work from home or at times outside of the typical peak traffic times.” – See more at: Well, that is not very helpful advice for our firm, nor for many other businesses who cannot operate remotely.

The Courts will continue to operate during the games. The Tribunals located in downtown Toronto will continue to operate during the games (thanks HTRO for scheduling one of my files smack in the middle of the games). The business of law will continue to require lawyers to travel on the highways during “peak” games hours. Clients will be billed for additional travel time: no one wins.

What benefit exactly are these games bringing Toronto? Colour me bitter & cynical (you know I’m a business lawyer right?) but I cannot imagine the benefit to the tourist industry outweighing the overall destructive impact of the Pan Am Games traffic on all other industries.

It is completely ridiculous that a City, whose Traffic is one of the worst in the world, chose to host Pan Am Games and place venues in some of the hardest to reach areas of the GTA, then ask all of the businesses of the GTA to change how they do things to accommodate poor planning.

Now let’s talk Gardiner options … no wait, let’s not.

Inga B. Andriessen JD