The Chatham Daily News - - OPINION -

350 km high-speed rail sys­tem between Toronto and Wind­sor, with stops in Kitch­ener, Guelph, Lon­don and Chatham. Price tag: about $20 bil­lion. Full sys­tem could be run­ning by 2031. Ru­ral res­i­dents con­cerned about rail lines run­ning through their farms and trun­cat­ing roads, es­pe­cially for emer­gency ser­vices. farm­ers and ru­ral politi­cians.

“I guess I find it dis­ap­point­ing that there would be op­po­si­tion to it when we’re in that plan­ning phase,” she said. “We’re com­mit­ted to do­ing it right.”

Pro­gres­sive Con­ser­va­tive MPP Monte McNaughton (LambtonKent-Mid­dle­sex) is skep­ti­cal.

“I’ve long said that the prom­ise of high-speed rail is yet an­other elec­tion ploy,” he said.

Though he sees the value of a rail sys­tem that could re­duce con­ges­tion on the 400-series high­ways and of­fer “op­por­tu­ni­ties,” McNaughton said he heard ris­ing re­sis­tance from farm­ers in his rid­ing this sum­mer.

Bradley thinks the project is decades away from com­ple­tion.

“It’s a mam­moth un­der­tak­ing,” he said. “When you look at how these sys­tems are de­vel­oped else­where, they usu­ally run in con­junc­tion with ex­ist­ing trans­porta­tion cor­ri­dors. Here they just seem to want to slice through the coun­try­side,” Bradley said.

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