The province is one step closer to bringing a high speed rail (HSR) system to Ontario.
On Monday, the Ontario government announced it is establishing an HSR Planning Advisory Board, the first step in providing strategic support on the project, which was first announced in May.
The HSR service would travel between Toronto and Windsor at speeds up to 250 kilometres per hour on a combination of existing track and new dedicated rail corridors. This could cut travel times between the cities from over four hours to just over two, according to the province.
“High speed rail will dramatically change what’s possible for people in Southwestern Ontario,” said Premiere Kathleen Wynne in a statement. “Whether that’s giving people a faster, greener way to get to a great job in the tech industry, allowing family members to visit more often or helping people discover more of our beautiful province.”
This week, the province launched a website with details of what the high speed rail will mean for residents across the province, and how people can provide feedback on the project.
On the website, Ontario states that over 60 years, the economic benefits from high-speed rail are expected to yield over $20 billion from passenger travel time savings, greenhouse gas reduction benefits, and benefits from reduced congestion on roads.
The proposed high-speed rail system will include 7 stops, constructed in two phases with phase 1 including Toronto, Pearson airport, Guelph, Kitchener-Waterloo, and London. The second phase includes London, Chatham, and Windsor.
At this time, the high-speed rail between Toronto and London projected to be complete as early as 2025, with the extension to Windsor to be completed by 2031.