A quarter billion dollar boondoggle

A false resurrection for E&N Rail line

Re: CEO pegs $254 million as realistic for Island rail (Courier, May 7).

Larry Stevenson and the Island Corridor Foundation are merely lapdogs to Dennis Washington, the American billionaire who owns Southern Rail, the main beneficiary of this plan, which would effectively gut the trucking industry that has developed and effectively provided these needs over the past dozen years.

The E&N is moribund and should only arise as a hiking and biking trail, thus providing extensive opportunities for the waiting tourist industry. When, not if, the population north of the Malahat reaches a million and a half or more, that will be the time to add an LRT service with necessary upgrades to the E&N Trail.

Greater Victoria will take care of its transportation needs on its own (read Stew Young’s) way – as so it should – but rebuilding the decrepit E&N is not the answer.

The Cowichan Valley Regional District should immediately cancel its continuing and wasteful half-million dollars per year support of the toothless Island Corridor Foundation – unless it is re-purposed to effectively serve the up-Island population.

Pat Mulcahy,

Saltair

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