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Committee approves plan to study rail line locations

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City hall is going to explore the possibility of relocating some or all of the rail lines that criss-cross Winnipeg.

Members of executive policy committee unanimously supported the proposal, which had been suggested by councillors Justin Swandel and Dan Vandal at last week’s council meeting.

Mayor Sam Katz said discussions on relocating rail lines occur on a regular basis by members of council with the railroads, industry and representatives of the provincial and federal governments.

Katz said the plan would call for formal discussions to explore costs and determine which lines could be relocated.

Katz said relocation is an expensive proposition.

"There would be a lot of money involved," Katz said. "But sooner or later it has to be addressed."

The proposal calls on the city to create a "high level working group," involving the railroads, the transportation industry, government regulators, the province and Ottawa "to work toward a high level understanding of the costs and benefits of railroad rationalization."

Katz identified the CPR marshalling yard as a prime consideration for relocation.

Swandel said working around rail lines for infrastructure projects results in a significant additional expense to city projects, adding relocation and rationalizing rail line is long over-due.

 

 

aldo.santin@freepress.mb.ca

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