Washington Governor Jay Inslee and B.C. Premier John Horgan. (B.C. government)

B.C. pitches in for Vancouver-Seattle high-speed rail study

John Horgan contributes $300,000 for business case analysis

B.C. Premier John Horgan and Washington Governor Jay Inslee have announced their next step in an ambitious plan to build high-speed rail running from Vancouver to Seattle and Portland, Oregon.

B.C. will contribute $300,000 toward a business case study for the line, looking at various technologies to deliver high-speed rail, Horgan announced Friday in Vancouver. Inslee said his state’s earlier studies show big potential for ridership, fed by a hockey rivalry between the Vancouver Canucks and the prospective NHL franchise, the Seattle Totems.

“When you build a high-speed rail line, you are building a monument to optimism,” Inslee said. “Washington began a feasibility study, and it came back with nothing but optimism.”

Asked if cost overruns and delays in other projects are a concern, Horgan said the purpose of the business case study is to answer the questions about benefits and risks.

Inslee’s visit to B.C. follows approval in the Washington state legislature this week of a more detailed look at the proposal, including possible routes, expected ridership and economic benefits.

An earlier study commissioned by Washington’s Department of Transportation was released in December, looking at conventional high-speed rail as used extensively in Asia, and “maglev” that allows trains to float on magnetic fields without actually touching the track.

That study estimated the cost at between $24 and $42 billion, with details to come on the exact route and station locations.

Conventional high-speed trains can travel up to 350 km/h, with maglev technology already in use in Japan and China capable of more than 400 km/h. Travel from Vancouver to Seattle could take less than an hour.

In addition to the I-5 freeway, B.C. and Washington are already linked by Amtrak rail, airports and fast ferry service from Victoria.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

George Jay parents tired of dog poop left on school’s fields

Parents advocate for stronger fines, more signage in the neighbourhood

Thief steals donation box, tip jar from Oak Bay businesses

Oak Bay Police Department looking for suspect

Booms go up in Gorge Creek after hydrocarbon spill

The source of the spill is being investigated

Dog dies, Victoria man arrested after incident in Oaklands

Police called to ‘incident between a man and a dog’ Monday afternoon

Supreme Court determines next phase of Victoria’s plastic bag ban on Thursday

The Supreme Court of Canada will decide whether or not it will hear the appeal

VIDEO: Greater Victoria mom shares ‘insane’ experience of viral dinosaur video

Tabitha Cooper filmed her costumed sons meeting their grandma at the Victoria International Airport

Skier dies at Fernie Alpine Resort

It’s the second person to die in a tree well at a ski resort in B.C. in the past week.

Power lines cut as thieves strike Vancouver Island veterinary hospital

‘Thankfully there weren’t any animals or staff in the clinic when this happened’

Vancouver Island home to one of Canada’s largest private skateboard collections

Eric Pinto owns hundreds of boards, spanning multiple decades

ICBC to bring in ranking system for collision, glass repair shops

Change comes after the much-maligned auto insurer has faced criticism for sky-high premiums

Surrey’s ‘Pink Palace’ being used for Stephen King horror shoot

New web series based on King’s The Stand novel

‘It was just so fast’: B.C. teen recalls 150-metre fall down Oregon mountain

Surrey’s Gurbaz Singh broke his leg on Mount Hood on Dec. 30

Vancouver Island Pride weekend returns to Mount Washington Alpine Resort

Building on the success of last year’s family-friendly pride festival on Vancouver… Continue reading

Scarlett Point lighthouse keeper wins a million bucks playing the lottery

“I usually just get a quick pick, so I didn’t expect to win a big prize”

Most Read