E&N Funding For Bed Rail Repairs Announced
April 10th, 2012 - 5:31pm
GARRISON COMMENTS ON APPROVAL OF E&N RAIL FUNDING
VICTORIA – Today Randall Garrison (Esquimalt – Juan de Fuca) welcomed the Government’s decision to finally commit to its share of the funding for E&N rail bed repairs. Garrison has been asking the Minister of Transport to commit the $7.5 million for over seven months.
After months of delay waiting for a response from the Conservatives to finally commit to fund their share of rail-bed repair for the E&N Railway, Garrison said the commitment was better late than never. “The Conservatives waited far too long to make the crucial decision to fund passenger rail service on Vancouver Island” Garrison said. “This delay risked total gridlock outside the Dockyard gate when the new shipbuilding jobs come on stream” he continued.
“Given that there will be nearly 1000 new jobs created at Dockyard in my riding and traffic is already near gridlock, the federal government’s delay in funding the rail bed repair means we risk running out of time to get the railway operating in time for new workers to get to work” Garrison argued. “The Lower Island desperately needed this commuter option for both economic and environmental reasons, so I am happy to see the government finally recognize that” Garrison stated.
Garrison said he also recognizes that the E&N railway is just one piece of a larger solution to fixing traffic congestion on the Lower Island. “I will continue working with local representatives to asses traffic needs on Vancouver Island and pressure the federal government to commit to long-term sustainable transportation solutions to ease the traffic concerns of our communities” Garrison said.
Municipalities, First Nations, MLAs, MPs, Chambers of Commerce and citizens from all over Vancouver Island were united in calling for the E&N to resume passenger service and to start running a commuter service.