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Infrastructure Canada

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Section II: Analysis of Program Activities by Strategic Outcome

The planning information presented in this section is organized by Infrastructure Canada’s Program Activity Architecture (PAA) for 2007-2008, which consists of the following three Program Activity areas:

  • Infrastructure Investments – Consists of all infrastructure programming delivered through transfer payments as well as the related program management and monitoring functions. The activity contributes to the construction, renewal and enhancement of public infrastructure in Canada and builds capacity for addressing infrastructure issues in partnership with others.
  • Policy, Knowledge and Partnership Development – Consists of activities undertaken in policy development, knowledge, research and analysis, and partnership development. The Activity develops policies based on research and strong partnerships to address existing and emerging challenges and opportunities.
  • Departmental Administration – Encompasses the Office of the Deputy Head, Corporate Services, Communications, and Legal Services. Section IV provides information on this Activity.

Infrastructure Investments

This Program Activity consists of three types of infrastructure programming delivered through transfer payments as well as the related program management and monitoring functions.

Table 5: Financial and Human Resource Requirements, Infrastructure Investments, 2007-2008 to 2009-2010

Financial Resources (in $ thousands)







Human Resources (full-time equivalents)







3. The operating budget for Infrastructure Canada was allocated from program funds and sunsets at the end of 2006-2007. The organization has found an interim solution for part of 2007-2008 and is working with central agencies on options for a long-term source of funds.

The expected result of this Program Activity is to maximize economic, social, cultural and environmental benefits for Canadians through investments in public infrastructure in a coordinated manner with provincial, territorial and municipal governments, and First Nations.

Infrastructure Canada manages three types of programs, each tailored to distinct needs and requirements, providing investments in Canada’s priority infrastructure needs. The three categories of programs are:

  1. Community-based investments;
  2. Large-scale strategic programs; and
  3. Gas Tax and Public Transit funds.

The following pages provide a brief description of plans for Budget 2006 infrastructure commitments and of each existing investment program and the plans for 2007-2008.

Budget 2006 Infrastructure Funding and Advantage Canada

Budget 2006 provided $16.5 billion for infrastructure including: $6.6 billion in new infrastructure funding to support both small and larger scale municipal infrastructure projects in communities across Canada and improvements to land border crossings and highways; support for the Asia-Pacific Gateway and Corridor Initiative ($591 million); new funding of $900 million to complement $400 million for public transit ($1.3 billion total); and the maintenance of the Gas Tax funding agreements worth $5 billion over five years to support sustainable municipal infrastructure.

Planned activities in this area will include working with portfolio partner Transport Canada to establish programs related to the $6.6 billion of new funding announced in Budget 2006, including the development of program terms and conditions and the negotiation of agreements.

1. Community-based Investments

Community-based investments address community undertakings of a smaller scale. The two funds are the Infrastructure Canada Program and its 2003 successor, the Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund. Both funds emphasize investments in municipal infrastructure that enhance environmental quality and quality of life.

i) Infrastructure Canada Program (ICP)

The $2.05-billion ICP was created in 2000 to enhance infra-structure in Canada’s urban and rural communities, and to improve quality of life through investments that protect the environment and support long-term community and economic growth.

As of March 31, 2006, all ICP funding has been committed to 3,879 projects across Canada. This program is scheduled to conclude March 31, 2009 (March 31, 2007 for the First Nations component).

The ICP’s priority has been to support “green” municipal infrastructure, consistent with the federal government’s sustainable development objective. A minimum of 50 per cent of federal expenditures are to be devoted to such projects as water and wastewater systems, solid waste management and recycling, and capital expenditures to retrofit or improve the energy efficiency of buildings and facilities owned by local governments. Other priorities include local transportation infrastructure, cultural and recreational facilities, rural and remote telecommunications and affordable housing.

Funding for the ICP was transferred to the five federal delivery partners responsible for program delivery: Western Economic Diversification Canada (for projects in the Western provinces); Industry Canada (for Ontario projects); Canada Economic Development – Quebec (for Quebec projects); Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (for projects in the Atlantic provinces); and, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (for First Nations and the three territories). Detailed reporting on ICP expenditures is the responsibility of these organizations.

ii) Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund (MRIF)

MRIF focuses on projects that support sustainable development and quality of life, with a minimum 50 per cent of its nation-wide expenditures devoted to projects addressing environmental quality objectives. The fund was allocated $1 billion for smaller-scale municipal infrastructure projects designed to improve the quality of life and economic opportunities in smaller centres, including a component addressing the infrastructure needs of First Nations communities.

The fund is cost-shared, with the Government of Canada contributing, generally, one-third of a project’s eligible costs. MRIF agreements have been signed with all provinces and territories. MRIF funds identified for First Nations communities in the provinces will be made available in 2007-2008.

Pending the full implementation of the Budget 2006 infrastructure plan and program funds, approval was given to provide an additional $200 million to MRIF in late 2006. This reflects the Budget 2006 funding forecast and brings the total program funding to date to $1.2 billion. 

As part of its infrastructure programming activities, Infrastructure Canada also works to build capacity and foster knowledge acquisition on infrastructure and communities issues among municipalities and other partners. A Municipal Capacity Building component under MRIF seeks to encourage the use of integrated asset management by small-scale Canadian municipalities.

The major planned activities under the MRIF program for 2007-2008 are the following:

  • Put into effect the allocation of an additional $200 million in MRIF funding to specific projects; 
  • Implement program to deliver MRIF funds identified for First Nations communities in the provinces; and
  • Continue with the sound administration of the MRIF program in cooperation with federal delivery partners.

Table 6: Allocation of Community-based Infrastructure Investments, by Jurisdiction

(Total Federal Funding Allocation ($ millions))




Western Economic Diversification Canada



British Columbia5












Industry Canada/Ontario



Canada Economic Development/Quebec



Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency



New Brunswick



Nova Scotia



Prince Edward Island



Newfoundland & Labrador



Indian and Northern Affairs Canada






Northwest Territories






First Nations









Federal Coordination






4. Amounts include the $200M allocation from Budget 2006.

5. $60 million of British Columbia’s original allocation was transferred to the Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund for the Canada Line project.

6.Additional funding has been provided for InfraGuide above the initial allocation from ICP. IngraGuide is intended to provide municipalities with an authoritative source of technical best practices for infrastructure planning, construction, maintenance and repair. For more information, please refer to

2. Large-Scale Strategic Programs

The second category of funding programs provides large-scale, strategic investments in support of key federal objectives of trade, security, productivity and sustainable development. The two funds under this category are the Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund and the Border Infrastructure Fund.

i) Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund (CSIF)

CSIF is directed to projects of major federal and regional significance in areas that are vital to sustaining economic growth and enhancing the quality of life of Canadians. These investments are made in cooperation with the provinces and territories, munici-palities, and the private sector. Maximum federal funding is set at 50 per cent of total eligible project costs, except for broadband and northern infrastructure projects where funding can go up to a maximum of 75 per cent.

CSIF provided a $200-million allocation for projects identified as national priority projects: the Red River Floodway project in Manitoba; transportation infrastructure improvements under the “Corridors for Canada” in the Northwest Territories; the National Satellite Initiative to provide broadband access to Northern and remote communities; and the twinning of the Trans-Canada Highway in Banff National Park in Alberta7.

7. Details of these and other announced projects can be found at:

Some of the recently announced CSIF projects include: public infrastructure at Mont Tremblant, Quebec; support for the creation of an innovative urban green space called the Evergreen at the Brick Works in Toronto, Ontario; upgrading the wastewater treatment facilities and collection systems in the City of Dawson and the Village of Carmack in Yukon; and, improved access to Fort McMurray by twinning a 146-km section of Highway 63.

CSIF’s delivery model is based on a partnership arrangement between Infrastructure Canada and other federal departments that have a direct mandate in a given field or departments and agencies that have a regional development mandate. In the case of transport-related projects, Transport Canada provides the project lead. Interdepartmental Memoranda of Understanding are negotiated to clarify accountabilities. To date, Memoranda of Understanding have been developed with all jurisdictions, except for Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions.

Budget 2006 provided an incremental top-up of $300 million for CSIF projects in Ontario. The bulk of this project funding has now been committed to projects in Ontario.

Most CSIF funding has been committed, with the exceptions of Ontario, Newfoundland & Labrador, Nova Scotia and Yukon.

Planned activities under the CSIF for 2007-2008 include the following:

  • Continue to work with the provinces and territories to determine the projects to receive the remaining uncommitted funds; seek Treasury Board approval for these projects; and develop the related contribution agreements;
  • Complete a Memorandum of Understanding with Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions; and
  • Continue with the sound administration of the CSIF program.

ii) Border Infrastructure Fund (BIF)

The BIF was established in 2002 as a $600-million fund to target the six largest surface border crossings between Canada and the United States, as well as several other crossings. It has provided funding for investments in physical infrastructure, intelligent transportation system infrastructure, and improved analytical capacity. The fund reflects the importance of Canada’s border crossings, ports and highway approaches to economic growth, trade and security both nationally and internationally. Infrastructure Canada manages the BIF program in partnership with Transport Canada under the terms of a Memorandum of Understanding.

Most of the BIF funds have been committed.

3. Gas Tax and Public Transit Funds

The third type of infrastructure programming consists of agreements with provincial and territorial governments, municipal associations and the City of Toronto for investments in environmentally sustainable municipal infrastructure that benefit Canada’s communities. This support represents $5 billion in federal gas tax revenues, as well as $400 million of federal contributions to public transit. The various agreements are available on Infrastructure Canada’s website:

i) Gas Tax Fund

The Gas Tax Fund (GTF) is a five-year $5-billion transfer payment program established in 2005-2006 to enable municipalities to make long-term financial investments in environmentally-sustainable infrastructure projects in such areas as transit, water and sewers, solid waste and community energy systems. The investments are intended to lead to the three environmental goals of the Gas Tax Fund: cleaner air, cleaner water and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.

The GTF is managed through agreements entered into by the Minister with each provincial/territorial government, the City of Toronto, in some cases a municipal association. Through these agreements, each order of government has responsibilities for the implementation of the Gas Tax Fund. Infrastructure Canada is responsible for the overall administration, coordination, communications, and national reporting and evaluation related to this initiative and for the federal/provincial/territorial nego-tiations. Provinces, territories, the Association of Municipalities of Ontario, the Union of British Columbia Municipalities and the City of Toronto are responsible for the management of the agreement within their jurisdictions. Local governments are responsible for determining project priorities, project implementation and project level reporting.

The Gas Tax Fund was also created to increase collaboration between orders of government on issues facing cities and communities. Each signed agreement calls for the establishment of an Oversight Committee to monitor the overall strategic implementation of the agreement and to examine broader issues facing cities and communities.

Eligible investments include capital expenditures for environ-mentally sustainable municipal infrastructure. Project categories are:

  • Water;
  • Wastewater;
  • Solid waste;
  • Public transit;
  • Community energy systems; and
  • Local roads and bridges.

Funding is also available for Capacity Building initiatives to enable communities to design and implement integrated community sustainability plans – integrated plans that outline how a community will achieve its long-term vision.

ii) Public Transit Fund

The Public Transit Fund (PTF) is a $400-million transfer payment program, established in 2005-2006, designed to provide funding to improve public transit services to Canadians. The PTF offers the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and smog in urban areas by improving services and offering Canadians greater flexibility in their transportation options.

The PTF was designed to build on the GTF agreements, and its terms and conditions mirror those of the latter. Like the GTF, PTF funding is governed by agreements that set out an allocation formula, delivery mechanism and a rigorous accountability regime that will enable the Minister to report to Parliament on how this funding is being spent.

The Government of Canada’s role in the day-to-day delivery and administration of the fund is limited, but funding is governed by agreements that set out a rigorous accountability regime that will enable the Minister to report to Parliament on how this funding is being spent.

Eligible investments include capital expenditures for public transit infrastructure, defined as local infrastructure projects falling in one of the following categories:

  • Rapid transit infrastructure;
  • Rolling stock;
  • Intelligent transport system;
  • Related capital infrastructure;
  • Active transportation infrastructure; and
  • Para transit.

Examples of some of the announced GTF and PTF projects include: expansion of the Edmonton South Light Transit (LRT) system ($108 million); purchase of an additional 225 new buses to modernize and expand transit services in the Greater Vancouver Regional District ($307 million); and, funding for various municipal infrastructure priorities (including drinking water, sewage, and wastewater treatment) in the Montréal region ($38 million). Information on these and other PTF and GTF projects is available at

Planned activities under the GTF and PTF for 2007-2008 include the following:

  • Continue with the sound administration of the two programs;
  • Conclude agreements under the various existing funding programs with those jurisdictions that have not yet finalized agreements. These include PTF Agreements with Newfoundland and Labrador, and the Northwest Territories;
  • Using Oversight Committees to monitor the strategic implementation of the GTF and PTF agreements, discuss issues regarding infrastructure coordination, and enhance the collaboration with provinces, territories and municipalities. In 2007-2008, Infrastructure Canada will focus its efforts on working with each jurisdiction on outcomes reporting as well as leading a multilateral process on national GTF reporting; and
  • Flow funds to First Nations throught a funding mechanism identified jointly with Indian and Northern Affairs Canada and the Assembly of First Nations.

Table 7: Allocation of Gas Tax Fund and Public Transit Fund Investments, by Jurisdiction

(Total Federal Funding Allocation (in $ millions))




British Columbia


















New Brunswick



Nova Scotia



Prince Edward Island



Newfoundland & Labrador






Northwest Territories






First Nations






Policy, Knowledge and Partnership Development

This Program Activity consists of activities undertaken in policy development; knowledge, research and analysis; and partnership development. The outcomes of this Activity is the development of policies that are based on research and the input from strong partnerships to address infrastructure challenges and opportunities.

Table 8: Financial and Human Resource Requirements, Policy, Knowledge and Partnership Development, 2007-2008 to 2009-2010

Financial Resources (in $ thousands)







Human Resources (full-time equivalents)







8. The operating budget for Infrastructure Canada was allocated from program funds and sunsets at the end of 2006-2007. The organization has found an interim solution for part of 2007-2008 and is working with central agencies on options for a long-term source of funds.


The policy development activity requires a high degree of collaboration with other federal departments and agencies, as well as with provinces, territories, municipalities, municipal associations, First Nations, international organizations, and the private sector.

In the context of a rapidly changing global economy and society, the critical role of cities and communities in Canada’s competitiveness and quality of life is increasingly recognized. They play the role of key trade gateways, attract and retain skilled labour and foreign investment, encourage research and innovation, build critical, sustainable infrastructure, ensure public safety, protect environmental quality, support social inclusion and cultural diversity, and deliver key municipal services.

For all these reasons, the Government has an interest in supporting strong, healthy and sustainable cities and communities and making more effective use of intergovernmental relationships to advance core and shared responsibilities and interests. The policy framework for communities will focus on bringing greater clarity to government roles and responsibilities, enhancing intergovernmental collaboration, and integrating “place” and spatial considerations into the design and implementation of Government of Canada policies, programs and investments.

Infrastructure Canada maintains a policy function that: identifies and assesses needs with respect to infrastructure; evaluates priorities and funding pressures; and, develops policy options for Ministerial consideration.

The planned policy-related activities in 2007-2008 will include the following:

  • As outlined in Advantage Canada, develop and implement a comprehensive plan for infrastructure, providing a long-term policy framework to support predictable and long-term infrastructure funding;
  • Develop a policy framework and prepare program terms and conditions for Budget 2006 infrastructure funding;
  • Continue identification and assessment of infrastructure pressures in collaboration with other federal departments;
  • Provide support to the Government of Canada’s Private Public Partnership (P3) approach as outline in Advantage Canada; and
  • Design infrastructure programs that enable provinces and territories as well as cities and communities to contribute to Canada’s competitiveness, environmental and quality of life objectives.


In supporting the development of strategic policies and strong partnerships, the Infrastructure Canada Research Strategy focuses on three objectives:

  • Knowledge Generation – Building new knowledge that responds directly to priority gaps in the understanding of public infrastructure issues in Canadian communities that are key for policy purposes;
  • Community Building – Fostering the development of a stronger, better-networked, multi-disciplinary community of researchers and other experts committed to meeting the needs of policy and decision makers; and
  • Knowledge Dissemination and Transfer – Developing innovative, effective ways to share and communicate knowledge from national and international sources about infrastructure and communities to policy and decision makers, researchers, industry, non-governmental organizations, professional associations and the general public.

In support of the Research Strategy, which is designed to enhance research and knowledge on infrastructure, and cities and communities, a five-year, $25-million funding initiative was initiated in fiscal year 2004-2005. The initiative currently consists of the Peer Reviewed Research Studies (PRRS) and Knowledge-building, Outreach and Awareness (KOA) programs. These programs have been designed to respond directly to several key gaps that must be filled in order to better position the Government of Canada to address current and future Canadian infrastructure pressures and city and community issues. (For more details on research funding programs, refer to

Under the PRRS, funding is awarded by Infrastructure Canada on the basis of merit, through a competitive peer review process executed by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada with assistance from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

Infrastructure Canada’s research priority groupings for fiscal year 2007-2008 are listed below.

  • The state of infrastructure in cities and communities;
  • Innovation;
  • Policy design and implementation;
  • Infrastructure impacts;
  • Sustainability;
  • Finance; and
  • Governance.

Partnership Development

Infrastructure Canada will continue to work in partnership with the provinces and territories, municipalities, First Nations and stakeholders to develop and implement a vision for ensuring the economic, social, cultural and environmental sustainability of Canada’s cities and communities. Infrastructure Canada is committed to working with partners at all levels to help ensure that communities have a stronger voice in decisions that affect them.

There are opportunities for more effective and innovative inter-governmental relationships to help address, together, the complex, interrelated challenges that can affect Canada’s economic prosperity and quality of life. The implementation of Gas Tax Fund agreements has resulted in the creation of Oversight Committees that provide new opportunities for dialogue. Some agreements include a commitment for future collaboration via trilateral agreements to better co-ordinate existing federal, provincial and municipal policies, programs and investments in key urban centres.

In 2007-2008, Infrastructure Canada will continue to strengthen its capacity to develop strategic policies based on sound knowledge and strong partnerships. Specific planned initiatives will include:

  • Strengthen collaboration with provinces, territories and municipalities through such initiatives as trilateral tables and the Gas Tax Oversight Committees responsible for monitoring the overall strategic implementation of GTF and PTF.
  • Support the building of municipal capacity to plan for and achieve sustainability objectives, including sustainable infrastructure.
  • Maintain and enhance strong partnerships with regional development agencies and other partners for the delivery of programs and projects.
  • Continue to work with international bodies (e.g., Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Bank, UN-HABITAT) on cities and communities related issues and performance indicators.

Performance Measurement and Evaluation

This section outlines the approach taken by Infrastructure Canada to monitor the performance of two Program Activities and to measure and report on the results achieved.

Infrastructure Investments

Infrastructure Canada has identified a set of key indicators against which to report, on an ongoing basis, the performance of its various infrastructure funding programs (Table 9).

In 2007-2008, Infrastructure Canada will develop a horizontal approach for reporting that encompasses all infrastructure programs under its responsibility.

Measuring the outcomes of funding programs requires the conduct of periodic evaluation studies. Results-Based Management and Accountability Frameworks (RMAFs) and Risk-Based Audit Frameworks (RBAFs) have now been developed for all programs. These frameworks define expected results for each program and appropriate measurement indicators. They help ensure effective management decision-making and demonstrate clear accountability in the program areas.

In 2006-2007, Infrastructure Canada began a mid-term evaluation of the Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund, which will be completed in 2007-2008. On the basis of this evaluation, the program RMAF and RBAF will be updated to ensure that they maintain focus on measuring and reporting on outcomes throughout the lifecycle of the programs.

The Infrastructure Canada Program (ICP), an older program nearing completion, operates under a Federal Governance and Accountability Framework that identifies roles and responsibilities. In collaboration with its ICP delivery partners, Infrastructure Canada developed an integrated RMAF-RBAF for the ICP extension, and completed the ICP Mid-term Evaluation. The results of these two processes indicated the need to be diligent to ensure program completion by the extended deadline of March 31, 2009, and the importance of working on a method to report outcome measures and of the ability to calculate cost effectiveness.

Infrastructure Canada will negotiate with each jurisdiction on the core performance measures to be used for the various investment areas of the Gas Tax Fund (GTF). As well, Infrastructure Canada is consulting with other government departments, academia and key associations to share information and expertise on relevant performance measures for infrastructure investment. The Gas Tax Fund and Public Transit Fund are outcomes-based programs designed to provide flexibility to municipalities to fund their local infrastructure priorities that meet national outcomes of cleaner air, cleaner water and reduced GHG emissions. Municipalities, provinces and territories, and INFC share responsibility for reporting on the results of these investments.

In 2006-2007, an Advisory Committee with representation from GTF signatories began to study performance measures suitable for national reporting. An internal evaluation of the GTF program was initiated in 2006-2007 to assess the implementation of the initiative and to ensure proper management systems.

Mid-term evaluations for CSIF and BIF will assess and determine results achieved to date. The evaluations will be performed in 2007-2008, and 2008-2009 respectively.

Further information on Infrastructure Canada’s evaluation plan is provided in the Supplementary Tables section of this RPP (Table 17).

Table 9: Performance Indicators for Infrastructure Programs

Output indicators

  • Number of project announcements
  • Number of signed agreements
  • Number of MOUs with other government departments and partners for delivery
  • Number of projects approved

Intermediate results indicators

  • Negotiation and completion of agreements and projects in an expeditious fashion
  • Collaborative support of other government departments, provinces, territories and key partners
  • Resources levered from partners
  • Effective program management and oversight of agreements (e.g., risk management, monitoring and reporting, e-management)

Ultimate results indicators

  • Safe, reliable transportation
  • Sustainable economic development
  • Sustainable use and quality of water, and efficient wastewater treatment
  • Safe and efficient borders
  • Improved innovation and delivery of public services via connectivity
  • Efficient and sustainable energy systems
  • Improved capacity for integrated community sustainability planning
  • New collaborative mechanisms

Policy, Knowledge and Partnerships

Infrastructure Canada’s policy, knowledge and partnership activities contribute to the Strategic Outcome by ensuring that Canada’s infrastructure investment decisions and activities are supported by rigorous, integrated knowledge and analysis and with the understanding and collaboration of provinces, territories, municipalities, First Nations and other partners.

A Results-Based Management and Accountability Framework (RMAF) and a Risk-Based Audit Framework (RBAF) have been developed for the Research-building, Outreach and Awareness program and for the Peer Reviewed Research Studies program. These frameworks define expected results for each program, identify performance indicators, help ensure effective management decision-making, and demonstrate clear accountability in the program areas.

Further work is planned for performance measurement in the policy, knowledge and partnership activities. Infrastructure Canada will also be building on the networks and collaborative efforts with other federal departments to share knowledge and build on existing expertise, networks and common interests such as performance measurement.

Over the next two years, work will also continue with the World Bank on an international project that includes Canada’s three largest cities to develop and test city performance indicators. It is planned that the results of the World Bank study will be shared at the next World Urban Forum in Nanjing in 2008.