“I can’t see investing hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars because somebody thinks it’s okay to take five hours to ride a train [from Courtenay] when the drive to Victoria is two and a half hours.”. A decision about what to do can’t be put off forever, he says. 1,333 reviews. The only rock tunnel on the E&N Railway cuts through a mountainside near the Malahat Summit. Goldstream Park is a must-see if you’re visiting south Vancouver Island … Autumn vignettes along a cycling trail: Vancouver Island. Speaking at a Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce event in March 2018, Horgan seemed to all but kill the idea. acquire, preserve and develop for purposes of the Foundation the Island Corridor which lies north-south from Victoria to Courtenay and east-west from Nanaimo to Port Alberni and from Duncan to Lake Cowichan on Vancouver Island; maintain the continuity of the Island Corridor as a continuous special use connection for all communities, while respecting and supporting First Nations interests and traditional lands and uses; contribute to safe and environmentally sound passenger and freight rail services along the Railroad; create trails, and facilitate opportunities for parks, gardens, greenways and other public areas for use of members of the public along the length of the Island Corridor; encourage a flexible infrastructure along the Island Corridor which will encourage a wide range of economic and trade activity for the benefit of all communities lying adjacent to the Island Corridor; preserve archaeological resources, historic landmarks, structures, artifacts and historic routes along the Island Corridor for historical purposes and for ongoing and future use by the community; conserve the environmental and spiritual features and functions of the Island Corridor in respect of the land, water and natural resources for the general benefit of the public; and do all such charitable activities which are incidental to and beneficial to the attainment of the purposes stated above. Because the Corridor serves 14 First Nations territories, it is an essential part of community and business development plans in Aboriginal communities on the Island. Rail-with-trail projects make efficient use of rail rights-of-way, transforming often under-utilized spaces into active, non-motorized, multi-use transportation corridors. In recent years, a competing organization called the Friends of Rails to Trails Vancouver Island has begun advocating for the tracks to be ripped out altogether and replaced with a cycling and multiuse pathway, like the Galloping Goose trail in Victoria, or the Kettle Valley Rail Trail in … Nelson remembers the 2015 federal election and all of the talk about bringing back island passenger rail, but it never happened. Province agreed to give And like that former railway, Craighead says mid-Island communities could see significant tourism traffic from a multiuse pathway. The views from the forested mountain trail are spectacular, and there is a great lookout halfway up. In late September, the ICF sent a letter to the premier questioning why the foundation was not consulted as a stakeholder and why rail has been left out of the strategy. “It’s a very important part of our future.”. This trail is 55 km in length starting in Sidney, continuing through downtown Victoria, ending in Sooke. Stevenson says any more “analysis paralysis” and political foot-dragging could end up choking the rail line more than the encroaching forest. The BC Trail is a 1,200 kilometer traverse of southern British Columbia, starting in the Fraser Valley and ending in Fernie, on the Alberta border. Currently, the discussions continue on the possibility of a commuter train service from Westhills to Victoria. “How are we going to step up the discussion about those opportunities instead of having this tunnel vision on rail that’s not financially feasible, that’s expensive,” Edwards said. “Doubling the price, I mean, that’s going kind of crazy in my mind,” Stevenson says. They also seek to expand the cycling/pedestrian trails alongside the railway from the current more than 100 kilometres . The Foundation recognizes the importance of this corridor as a link that connects communities economically, socially and culturally. Not just for long distance hikers, day hikers will enjoy many access points. Supreme Court dismissed a five-year-long lawsuit filed by the Snaw-Naw-As First Nation against the ICF and the Attorney General of Canada that sought to declare the rail line dead once and for all, and return the land to its original First Nation owners.Like other First Nations along the corridor, Snaw-Naw-As had the rail line put through their reserve lands in the early 1900s with little regard for their wishes, and only $650.50 in compensation. This was, and is, the land of the Huu-ay-aht, Ditidaht, and Pacheedaht tribes. Information gathered reinforces the vital importance of the rail … Rail construction will bring much needed economic stimulus to the Island. True to its name, The Great Trail embodies the vastness of our terrain and the diversity of our people. But the province’s awaited South Island Transportation Strategy released in September only says that commuter rail for the capital region should be explored long-term. At Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, we are building a nation connected by trails. Nelson doesn’t drive, and Dean has a disability that requires appointments in Duncan, the only place she could find a family doctor that could take him as a patient. “It’s an amazing asset. Ian Morrison, president of the AVICC agrees that with post-COVID recovery plans underway, “investments in [transportation] will benefit all the folks on Vancouver Island,” he says. Make our coverage in Nanaimo permanent. Some of the low ridership numbers can be attributed to what many have described as the backwards routing of the passenger train schedule — which left Victoria at 8:30 a.m., arriving in Courtenay by 1 p.m. and returning again to Victoria by nearly 6 p.m. With that schedule, anyone living north of Victoria would have to catch the afternoon train south, overnight in the city, and take the morning train home — essentially tying up two full days for something as simple as a business lunch in the provincial capital. Once a comprehensive railroad system, the decommissioned tracks are now home to an extensive recreational trail providing almost 650 km (400 mi) of connected pathways throughout the region. Cathedral Grove. Hike Galloping Goose Regional Trail and take in thick forests covered in fern and moss as you journey through Canadian wilderness. A cohesive plan an ease to the CPR and by 1925, the Vancouver &. 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