ICF trails for all

Yet again we hear an announcement of “victory” from the ICF in the shape of a “deal” for $20 million from the three levels of government.

Yet again we hear an announcement of “victory” from the ICF in the shape of a “deal” for $20 million from the three levels of government; enough, in the words of Graham Bruce, the CEO, to re-start the service. No definition of what “re-start” entails and all credible estimates of cost suggest figures well in excess of $100 million.

I am a lover of train travel and had the pleasure last summer of taking the Eurostar train from London to Paris. Note that each of those cities have a population greater than all of Canada west of the Great Lakes.

Train services are economically feasible only in densely populated areas, or between major cities. To restart the service here would be pouring money down the drain. There are many ways the money would be far better spent, e.g. health services, education.

The inevitable image these repeated attempts to raid the public purse to fund rail services here conjures up is that of the Monty Python parrot sketch, where the hapless shopkeeper tries repeatedly to convince the customer that the parrot is alive, when it is patently obvious that the parrot is dead.

For a fraction of the cost, turn the rail corridor over to recreational purposes such as hiking and biking, so that it can be enjoyed by all.

David Croot

Qualicum Beach

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