A freight train makes its way over the Black Bridge in Duncan in this file photo. Currently the only strip of track still in use is a seven-kilometre stretch in Nanaimo that services Superior Propane. A new survey from Island Corridor Foundation found siginificant support for getting trains up and running again. (Black Press Media file photo)

A freight train makes its way over the Black Bridge in Duncan in this file photo. Currently the only strip of track still in use is a seven-kilometre stretch in Nanaimo that services Superior Propane. A new survey from Island Corridor Foundation found siginificant support for getting trains up and running again. (Black Press Media file photo)

Rail survey finds strong support for revitalized service on Vancouver Island

81 per cent of respondents from Victoria to north Island support enhanced rail service

Supporters of restoring passenger rail service on Vancouver Island are buoyed by the results of a new public survey on the topic.

Released Oct. 9 by the Island Corridor Foundation (ICF), the survey done by Webstation Global Business Solutions includes responses to a variety of rail service-related questions from nearly 3,000 residents living in communities adjacent to the rail corridor.

The results paint a picture of general support for the idea: 81 per cent of respondents selected “strongly agree” (68 per cent) or “agree” (13 per cent) to the statement, “We need to revitalize and modernize the rail service on Vancouver Island for public and commercial rail use.”

RELATED STORY: Island Corridor Foundation launches survey on importance of Vancouver Island rail

The 2,979 individuals whose responses were used in the survey were grouped into five geographic regions, with 44 per cent from Greater Victoria, 20 per cent each in the Cowichan Valley and North Island, 13 per cent in Nanaimo and three per cent in Port Alberni.

Strong regional response to the need for a modernized and revitalized rail service came in the two largest population centres. In Victoria, 86 per cent of respondents chose agree or strongly agree, while in Nanaimo, it was 76 per cent.

The survey, available on the ICF website between Sept. 18 and 26, also asked for opinions on whether immediate provincial and federal funding should be made available to implement rail service (80 per cent agree or strongly agree), a belief in the viability of rail transportation on the Island (79 per cent yes), and the statement that rail service would “enhance tourism and provide other positive economic opportunities” on the Island (82 per cent agree or strongly agree).

“The results should leave no doubt in anyone’s mind that the people of Vancouver Island want to see rail service restored,” said ICF CEO Larry Stevenson in a release.

RELATED STORY: Island Corridor Foundation ‘cautiously optimistic’ about rail line reactivation

The survey has a margin for error of less than three per cent and has a 90 per cent level of confidence using standardized criteria from McGill University, stated Webstation.

Find the complete survey results at islandrail.ca.


 

Do you have a story tip? Email:don.descoteau@blackpress.ca. Follow us on Instagram.  
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca

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

Just Posted

Emily Harris (centre) started the in-person Monarch Moms meet-up groups in July, when it was much easier to physical distance in outdoor spaces. Harris started the group as a source of connection for women navigating the ups and downs of having a baby during a pandemic. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
Victoria new mom group navigates challenges of motherhood in a pandemic

Monarch Moms meet once a week for physically-distanced connection

The Takaya inspired sculpture currently in Kent Laforme’s outdoor studio. The 25,000-pound piece of Vancouver Island marble could be installed on Cattle Point. (Kevin Murdoch Photo)
Stone Takaya sculpture could soon ‘howl’ at Cattle Point

Oak Bay inviting public suggestions for 25,000-pound marble sculpture

Joanne Smith has been visiting Goldstream Provincial Park since she moved to Langford two years ago. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
PHOTOS: Visitors flock to Goldstream Provincial Park for 2020 salmon run

‘I wanted to come here before I move back to Australia,’ says visitor

Police closed McNeill Avenue after a workplace death Oct. 20, 2020. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
Tree-pruning community gathers in Oak Bay after tragic death

Crews met in solidarity at site of Tuesday incident

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry presents modelling of COVID-19 spread in B.C., March 25, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. sets another COVID-19 record with 203 new cases

up to 1,766 active cases in B.C., two more deaths

Advance polls are open from Oct. 15 to 21 with election day on Oct. 24. (Black Press Media file photo)
École de L’Anse-au-sable. (Google Maps)
B.C. records first COVID-19 outbreak at school, six weeks after students return to class

Three cases of the virus have been identified at École de L’Anse-au-sable

Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau is seen as she leaves media event during a campaign stop in West Vancouver, B.C., Tuesday, October 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Green leader hopes voters see value in minority government

The Greens received nearly 17 per cent of the popular vote in 2017 yet received just three seats

Local candidates Pam Alexis, Abbotsford-Mission, and Preet Rai, Abbotsford-West, look on as NDP Leader John Horgan main streets in Abbotsford, B.C., Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. NDP takes snap election risk during pandemic in quest for majority government

Green Leader Sonia Furstenau said the election was unnecessary and irresponsible during the pandemic

Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson speaks during a drive-in car rally campaign stop at a tour bus operator, in Delta, B.C., on October 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. Liberal Leader maintains confidence as campaign tests party identity

Liberal campaign has been disrupted by controversy

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
British Columbia man dies during ski trip near glacier west of Calgary

Kananaskis Public Safety and Alpine Helicopters responded around 2:30 p.m.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, Oct. 19, 2020, following a week-long break for the House of Commons. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
One crisis after another for Trudeau since last federal election one year ago

It has been a year of unprecedented calamity and crisis

Members of the Sipekne’katik First Nation load lobster traps on the wharf in Saulnierville, N.S., after launching its own self-regulated fishery on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Vancouver Island First Nations back Nova Scotia’s Indigenous lobster fishermen

Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council calls for action before lives are lost

Most Read