April 11, 2012

Federal funding boost for Vancouver Island railway

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AFTER many months of uncertainty, the future of the Vancouver Island railway finally looks assured after the Canadian government agreed to contribute $C 7.5m ($US 7.47m) to the rehabilitation of the Esquimalt - Courtenay line.
The Island Corridor Foundation, a non-profit organisation founded in 2006 to manage the line, says work will begin late this year on the project, which involves track upgrades and bridge works.

The upgrading will allow the restoration of Victoria - Courtenay passenger services, which were withdrawn by Via Rail in March 2011 due to the poor condition of the track. A Victoria and Cowichan commuter rail service is also proposed in the longer-term, and the Island Corridor Foundation says it hopes to start putting a business plan together soon.

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