Ontario pushes ahead with high-speed rail

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Ontario is pushing forward with high speed rail on the Toronto-Windsor corridor, a development that would cut commuting time in half.

The trains will be able to travel at up to 250 kilometres per hour on existing and new dedicated rail corridors. The typical commuting time between Windsor and Toronto is four hours. The new high-speed rail will be able to make the trip in just over two.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne announced the establishment of an HSR Planning Advisory Board to “provide strategic support on the landmark project.” This includes speaking with stakeholders, members of the private sector, and engaging with Indigenous communities. The board will be made of people from various high-tech and innovative industries such as engineering, transportation planning, finance, and environmental science.

“”High speed rail will dramatically change what’s possible for people in Southwestern Ontario. Whether that’s giving people a faster, greener way to get to a great job in the tech industry, allowing family members to visit more often or helping people discover more of our beautiful province,” Wynne said in a statement.

The provincial government says the line will service over seven million people and will stop at Windsor, Chatham, London, Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph and Toronto Union Station, with a connection to Pearson International Airport.

The project was announced in May 2017 and questions arose as to whether or not it was prudent to build high-rail transit leading into the city without a relief line in place to accommodate the extra commuters.

The cost of the new rail will be about $19 billion.

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