If you live in the Toronto to Windsor corridor, you’ve no doubt heard about the proposed High-Speed Rail line that was recently approved.  This issue is hot with controversy as most projects of this magnitude are.  Rather than taking sides we wanted to dive deeper into the proposal as well as the arguments both for and against the rail line, here is what we’ve found.

Estimated Cost: $11 Billion

TimeFrame: Construction to London to be completed by 2025

Construction to Windsor to be completed by 2031

Service Population:  The corridor is home to over 7 million people and 3.4 million jobs

Rail Line:  Will have seven stops between Toronto and Windsor when fully completed and 5 of those stops will be between Toronto & London

Time Savings:

    • London – Union Station Toronto: 57 minutes from current VIA Rail travel times.
    • London – Pearson Airport: No current direct train 2-hour drive so time savings of 63 minutes from car travel.

Proposed Route & Stops

PRO-ARGUMENTS

The arguments for the rail line are;

    • traffic reduction
    • Greenhouse gas reduction
    • travel time reductions

High-speed rail lines have been in use successfully for years in many other parts of the world including the European Union, Japan & China. They can transport people quickly and efficiently and can also lead to economic growth in areas serviced by the transit. 

CON-ARGUMENTS

The arguments against the rail line are;

    • division of farmland
    • reduced access for emergency and service vehicles
    • construction impact and permanent changes to existing roads
    • cost and funding further increasing the provincial and federal debt

Not all residents are not convinced that the high-speed rail line is currently in their best interest. The economic impact is unknown, and the costs are high.  Additionally, it will negatively impact current transportation methods and access for service or emergency vehicles along the corridor. The rail line between Kitchener and London will have no additional stops and not all communities impacted by the rail line will be serviced.