Rail better than ring road idea

Shipping coal into Port Alberni by rail is a better option than shipping it in by road, one reader says.

To the Editor,

It seems transportation planning for the Alberni and Nanaimo Regional Districts has been hijacked.  Why were taxpayers never consulted or informed of this committee and its $100 million proposal to government?

I want the Asia Pacific Gateway to happen in Port Alberni. I have sent many letters to our elected representatives advocating for Port Alberni to be part of it.

But in these times of economic austerity, it is insulting to taxpayers that local leaders would propose spending up to $100 million on a 25-kilometre highway plus unknown sums for the ring road when reactivating the Alberni rail line would be a fraction of the cost.

Mr. DeLuca cites a decrease in accidents, connections to Nanaimo and Annacis Island and time savings. Yet the railway would eliminate truck accidents, is already connected to Annacis and Nanaimo and the time savings are only for trips to Courtenay.

These new routes would blast through the watersheds of Big Qualicum River and Cherry Creek plus the City of Port Alberni’s Bainbridge Lake, and put existing recreational assets at risk.

The railway would destroy nothing, and would actually enhance existing tourism opportunities.

In fact, for the sums this committee has dreamt up, the railway could be extended down the Alberni Inlet to a new terminal, away from all the problems of the Alberni Harbour. Then customers, not the taxpayers, would pay for maintenance of the railway once it was built.

This is about more than the coal mine now. Billions of taxpayer dollars have been spent on rail infrastructure for the Prince Rupert and Vancouver ports. Port Alberni could be part of that.

Chris Alemany,

Port Alberni

Just Posted

Port Alberni’s breakfast program receives community support

The Read and Feed program runs on donations, grants and fundraising

Cherry Creek Shootout is a family affair

Alberni Men’s Club opens on Sunday

Kinder Morgan protest planned for Port Alberni

Protest is part of a nationwide movement on Friday, March 23

Get emergency prepared with workshop at Capitol Theatre

Emergency preparedness workshop will take place on Friday, Mar. 23

Beaver Creek home destroyed in early morning fire

A house on Beaver Creek Road and Wadena Road caught fire early Wednesday morning

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

Ontario father grief stricken over murder of ex-wife and children

‘No words to explain,’ grieving father of slain teens says in statement

Russian Embassy calls Trudeau’s criticism of Putin unproductive

The Russian Embassy is firing back at Trudeau for criticizing President Vladimir Putin

Murder charge upgraded for man accused in Toronto gay village death

Man accused the death of a woman in the Toronto gay village had charge upgraded after new evidence

Former NHL player Theo Fleury visits B.C. First Nations community

Abuse survivor Theo Fleury has been working with communities focusing on healing since 2009 and visited Esketemc First Nation in the Cariboo this week.

A B.C. council takes action in wake of former municipal politician’s sentencing

Dave Murray was sentenced to nine months for a sexual assault that occurred 26 years ago.

Harsher fines, new off-road vehicle rules in effect to combat B.C. wildfires

Anyone who starts a wildfire could be ordered to pay up to $1,000,000

Muddy water found in taps at B.C. hospital prompts investigation

Northern Health to hire consultant to examine three facilities for potential contamination

RCMP officer charged after pedestrian struck at crosswalk

A man suffered a broken leg and head lacerations after being struck by the police vehicle in 2017

Most Read