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Airport rail link gets new review

Weston residents opposed route

Environmental study to cost $1M

DEBRA BLACK
STAFF REPORTER

A decision to have a new wide-ranging environmental assessment on the proposed link between Union Station and Pearson airport was met with enthusiastic support yesterday at GO Transit’s board meeting.

“We’re very pleased,” said Mike Sullivan, a spokesman for the Weston Community Coalition, a citizen group unhappy with the current plan for the air-rail link.

The board voted to get a new and fuller assessment.

“It’s a big victory,” said Sullivan, sporting a “No Blue 22” T-shirt, referring to the proposed service’s moniker. “We can take a breath and do our research. Now, our principal concern — whether this is the only route for an air-rail link — can be studied. Other less destructive routes can be examined.”

The proposed link, which is to be operated by SNC-Lavalin, has been the subject of much controversy. Close to 2,500 Weston residents attended a public meeting to raise concerns over the project earlier this spring.

Residents were unhappy about the possible closing of some streets, the drop in property values and the potential expropriation of homes to make way for Blue 22.

The new environmental study will cost about $1 million, GO Transit officials said. That’s over and above the $250,000 that has been paid to SNC-Lavalin for work it has already done in reviewing the proposed line.

Getting a new assessment will add another year to construction of the link and any expansion of services on the Georgetown line, the board was told.

In other business, GO approved construction of a set of tracks between Burlington and Hamilton.




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