LETTER: Common sense means investing in rail

In the Feb. 8 issue of Victoria News there was an article that stated that all 13 mayors want funding for rail service, and that more studies will not be needed for this.

READ MORE: All 13 CRD mayors call for province to fund E&N rail segment

I agree, this has been studied to death. The time has come for action.

We have a 234-kilometre rail line that is not being used but is falling apart because of the lack of maintenance. The lack of investing in this vital infrastructure is appalling.

Moreover, there is talk of building another highway going through the Sooke Hills, which is a watershed area. Since everyone is supposedly concerned about the environment, whose bright idea is it to have traffic go through such a sensitive area?

READ MORE: CRD commission votes against alternate Malahat route through watershed

The proper way of addressing both transportation and environmental concerns is to invest in the existing rail line, not in a new highway. Victoria invested $105 million for a new bridge which is only 45 metres long. This same expenditure would have renovated the 234-km rail line, thus allowing the movement of a lot of people reliably and on time.

READ MORE: BRIDGING THE GAP: A chronology of the new Johnson Street Bridge project

These and other considerations all point to the rail system as a solution, and not to the creation of a new bottleneck of cars resulting in more congestion, CO, CO2, NO, and other hydrocarbon pollutants.

Let us use common sense, which, like the common cents, appears to be going the way of the Dodo bird.

Alexander Schmid

Victoria

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