Time to convert rails to trails

Re: ‘B.C. government to fund assessment of E&N rail line on Vancouver Island’ (www.pqbnews.com, Jan. 6)

Rather than spending taxpayers’ money on this losing proposition, why not go ahead and start converting the unused rail right of ways to biking and hiking trails?

Other B.C. communities are currently enjoying the economic and personal health benefits of hiking and biking trails that were built on decommissioned rail lines.

Examples are the Kettle Valley Rail Trail and the Columbia & Western Rail Trail which between them make up the longest rail trail network in British Columbia extending from Hope to Castlegar.

Another rail to trail is the North Star Rails to Trails that runs between Cranbrook and Kimberley. Of course there’s also Victoria’s Galloping Goose Trail.

If in the distant future there’s a requirement for rail service on Vancouver Island then the trails could be converted back to rail lines.

In the meantime Vancouver Island residents could not only reap the economic benefit but also the health benefits of what could be one of the most spectacular rail to trail systems in the world.

Tim Benesh

Qualicum Beach

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

Just Posted

COVID-19: New air carrier sought for Qualicum Beach Airport

Island Express Air ends operation due to pandemic

Parksville rider to join alumni for modified Tour de Rock

Roberts pleased to again be involved in Canadian Cancer Society’s Cops for Cancer event

Qualicum Beach roundabout project would cost nearly $2M

Town to apply for funds to cover $1.79M of the total

Protesters in Parksville demand change to current B.C. forest practices

Approximately 50 people march along Island Highway

QUIZ: A celebration of apples

September is the start of the apple harvest

Young B.C. cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

B.C. migrant, undocumented workers rally for permanent residency program

Rally is part of the Amnesty for Undocumented Workers Campaign led by the Migrant Workers Centre

Preparations underway for pandemic election in Saskatchewan and maybe B.C.

Administrators in B.C. and around the country are also looking to expand voting by mail during the pandemic

Nearly 20 per cent of COVID-19 infections among health-care workers by late July

WHO acknowledged the possibility that COVID-19 might be spread in the air under certain conditions

Ferry riders say lower fares are what’s most needed to improve service

Provincial government announces findings of public engagement process

COVID-19 skill loss will hurt global economic output for rest of century: survey

About one in seven Canadian students satisfied with transition toward online learning

Woodgrove Centre posts plans to make masks and temperature checks mandatory

Nanaimo mall advises in letter to customers that rules will come into effect Monday, Sept. 21

Most Read