The Island Corridor Foundation’s bid to re-establish rail service on the Island just got another backing of support.
The ICF has requested the federal and provincial governments work together to equitably settle Indigenous land claims, and to create a multi-disciplinary team to advance rail as a transportation option, and the Capital Regional District board has just voted to support the request.
“We need to have meaningful conversations with communities along the Island Rail Corridor about our shared future,” said Colin Plant, CRD board chair. “We want to keep options open for growth and development while listening to and respecting interests of local First Nations.”
The Island Rail Corridor is an approximately 295 km rail corridor owned by the ICF.
In September 2021, the B.C. Court of Appeal ruled in a case where the Snaw-Naw-As First Nation was requesting the ICF land through their territories be returned to the First Nation that the ICF had 18 months to make progress on re-establishing rail, or the land must be returned.
“The CRD Board has consistently recognized the Island Rail Corridor as a key component of the regional transportation system,” the CRD says in a news release.
“After Indigenous claims are settled, development of the corridor would entail more in-depth financial analysis working with regional districts, municipalities, and Nations in partnership with the provincial and federal governments.”