Keith Sketchley: Victoria City Council seems to not want E&N service

Long overdue is a decision to either do something meaningful with the E&N Railway, soon, or close it.

We’ve been hearing of plans for commuter service for years, yet only now is the federal government’s VIA Rail operation being asked to do something – but the Island Corridor wants many millions as well.

Is the deteriorated E&N track and VIA Rail equipment in such bad shape that it could not safely take the increased activity in the short term?

Oh, there’s only one train so people could be stranded if it failed?

Are charter busses a viable backup?

There is also B. C. Transit’s route 99 from Cobble Hill Station to downtown Victoria (which does not serve Esquimalt dockyards), plus potentially connecting bus routes from Duncan to Cobble Hill, and their 2008 draft plan for more.

Oh, how many train cars are there?

Certainly very few in motion when I see it.

Why is it running at all?

How much taxpayer money is being lost by bothering to run it?

Why would it take so long to get more trains running?

All over the world, even in B. C., people get things done much sooner when motivated by profit.

Victoria City Council seems to not want E&N service, given their desire to not include it in a new Johnson Street Bridge unless they get a free lunch from someone else paying.

Victoria employs overpaid “sustainability” bureaucrats, and the train is considered to help sustainability.

Is any E&N service viable without access to downtown Victoria?

The provincial government doesn’t seem to want to pay for a backup to the accident-prone Malahat highway.

Why bother keeping the E&N open?


Keith H. Sketchley, Saanich

Friday, November 5, 2010




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