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Topic Summary
Posted by: ENR3005 Posted on: May 17th, 2018, 1:53am
Some current news today, I have caught up on the times after my last post.  
 
Today's topic, our Premier on rail on Vancouver island. Let's tear up a rail line and pave it for buses. Really short sighted and poorly researched. We seem to behind the times in this part of North America. Look at the US, they are reinstating underused rail lines all over the place for commuter rail service. One only needs to look to the Northwestern Pacific Railway in California which serves a similar isolated area as the island as an example which was abandoned over a decade ago and rebuilt for commuter service with modern DMUs. As a result it has allowed passenger and freight to return which is growing in decent profitable volumes. I strongly disagree, there is a market for this, however nobody has the guts or political motivation to do anything. This Province and Country is broken if you keep reading current headlines. It is time for some true leadership by someone who actually does their homework, this is a reckless idea without any true consultation. A functioning island railway in perpetuity was Vancouver Island's agreement when entering into confederation. There are some serious legal challenges which could be made with the Federal Government on this matter which our Provincial Government should be taking the Federal Government to task with. One only needs to look to what has been done elsewhere because it has been done successfully by Governments that actually know the benefit to these types of services by looking elsewhere such as Europe.  
 
My two bits for the night.      
 
https://vancouverisland.ctvnews.ca/horgan-taps-brakes-on-idea-of-restoring-rail-service-on-the-south-island-1.3933348
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: May 18th, 2018, 4:33pm
That perpetuity Quote:
"A functioning island railway in perpetuity was Vancouver Island's agreement when entering into confederation."
Is a myth. The SCOC disallowed the perpetuity part claiming that the first passenger train to enter Victoria completed the railroad part of the contract.  
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: May 18th, 2018, 4:42pm
Can I take a bow now.
 
For years on every forum available I was foretelling that the BC ND party would not come through on their promises of putting money into the rail line. Strange that Clair Travena (Minister of Transport) is contradicting her boss (Premiere Horgan) and making foolish statements. There is no improvement to the traffic problem by putting commuter on the E & N and the replacing of rail on the Goose and Interurban and V & S lines would actually accomplish traffic removal from local highways.  
 
Where's the beating a dead horse Emoji?  
Posted by: vanislrailway Posted on: May 18th, 2018, 5:10pm
Todays News:
 
Turning the E&N rail line into a bus route would be a near-impossible, expensive proposition, says developer Ken Mariash.
 
“All these quick simple solutions instead of the obvious are always good to talk about but the minute you kind of go into the detail it’s quite shocking how impossible some of these other alternatives might be,” said Mariash of Focus Equities, master developer of the Bayview site.
Premier John Horgan in an address to the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce Tuesday rejected the idea of running light rail on the derelict line.
 
But while rail isn’t in the cards, Horgan said, he is committed to using the corridor to move people.
Transportation Minister Claire Trevena later said that if trains are ruled out, the E&N corridor could be used for buses.
 
The news surprised several local politicians who said Horgan’s speech was the first they had heard that commuter rail was not in the cards for the E&N.
 
Mariash, who said he’s invested in the neighbourhood of $1 million investigating options for light rail for the stretch between Langford and Victoria, said he wasn’t consulted on the decision.
 
One has only to look at some of the rail bridges to realize that transit isn’t feasible on the corridor, said Mariash.
 
“Most of those bridges that go over top on the separated crossing are only wide enough for a 10-foot-wide train to go over top. So how do you build anything there? Then the rail bed is only wide enough for a 10-foot train or less. How do you put anything on that.
 
He said running buses on the corridor is not as simple as pulling up the tracks.
 
“You’ve got to basically rip everything up, including the bed and start all over again with the foundations and the layers that are required from the ground up to build a freeway.”
 
Mariash said he doesn’t know why he wasn’t consulted.
 
“To reach out and go that direction you’re talking another $20 million in reports and engineering and rights of way and much more difficult discussion with First Nations ”
 
Capital costs such as track repairs for rail would be about $10 million, he said.
 
Rolling stock would have to be bought or leased but there’s lots available — both new and used, he said.
 
Trevena stressed that the government has been working on the issue for a number of months with Esquimalt-Metchosin MLA Mitzi Dean leading talks with First Nations.
 
“There’s still a lot of consultation to do because we’ve also got the question of the Island Corridor Foundation,” she said.
 
“They own the line and we’ve got to make sure that they’re fully engaged in this because it is their property.”
 
bcleverley@timescolonist.com