An Alstom “Coradia iLint” train, touted by the company as the “world’s first hydrogen powered train.” The train is pitched by South Fraser Community Rail group for use from Surrey to Chilliwack along the existing interurban rail line. (Photo: Alstom)

TRANSPORTATION

‘Rally for Rail’ meetings tout hydrogen-powered passenger train from Surrey to Chilliwack

Public-engagement events with Bill Vander Zalm and others in Cloverdale, Aldergrove and Abbotsford

Three “Rally for Rail” events are designed to keep on track a vision for an “emissions-free hydrogen powered passenger train” to run from Surrey to Chilliwack.

A 99-kilometre, 90-minute route with 12 stops is pitched by the South Fraser Community Rail group, which says reactivated service on the existing interurban rail line would serve about 1.2 million residents in the region.

A “public engagement meeting” about the proposal is planned Thursday (June 13) at Elements Casino, at Cloverdale Fairgrounds, starting at 7 p.m.

The group will host similar “Rally for Rail” events at Aldergrove Kinsmen Community Centre on Tuesday, June 18, and Abbotsford’s University of the Fraser Valley on Tuesday, June 25.

The three events promise appearances by project backers that include former B.C. premier Bill Vander Zalm, former Langley Township mayor Rick Green and also Patrick Condon, founder of UBC’s Urban Design program.

“Come out and learn the facts about this exciting transportation option that will build our economy, save our environment, and be financially responsible utilizing a free corridor owned by the people of B.C.,” says an event advisory. “Let’s send TransLink a message to start being responsible in its actions for our growing region, let’s show them what real Public Engagement looks like!”

• RELATED: Plan to put hydrogen trains on interurban line from Surrey to Chilliwack picks up speed.

In April, Green said the reactivation of passenger service along the interurban rail corridor would come at a fraction of the cost of a SkyTrain extension.

“The governments have approved $1.6 billion for Surrey (rapid transit expansion) and that’s fine. We’re not interfering in that $1.6 billion,” Green told the Now-Leader at the time.

“What they choose as technology is their business, but they shouldn’t be given any more money that’s going to take away from other projects in the region.

“Regardless of what happens on that, we will be sticking to our guns and working to make this thing a reality. Ultimately, if they decide to go ahead and get SkyTrain to Fleetwood for example, so be it, that’s their business, but we are going to be pushing for this.”

The group says the train proposal would cost an estimated $12.5 million per kilometre compared to the now-dead Surrey light-rail project’s estimated $157 million per kilometre (a figure provided by TransLink last September).

The South Fraser Community Rail group is online at southfrasercommunityrail.ca and also facebook.com/connectthevalley.

– with file from Amy Reid



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

Just Posted

Langley Township purchases Alder Inn and neighbouring lots for $5.4-million

The municipality has ‘no immediate plans’ to redevelop nearly one-acre in the downtown core

Grey-haired bank robber hit with dye pack in Langley heist

Police are looking for an older man who may be stained with dye

UPDATED: Condolences pour forth from community after passing of Langley-Aldergrove MP Mark Warawa

The Conservative Member of Parliament and long-time community advocate died in hospice this morning

Half million dollars guarantees Aldergrove man a new truck

Aird – a resident of 25 years in Aldergrove – has been buying lottery tickets for “forever.”

New Langley bistro caters to board game fans and families

Local food and games at every table is the formula for the new business

Video shows fireworks shot at swan in Alberta

Alberta Fish and Wildlife is investigating the incident in Grande Prairie

‘Text neck’ causing bone spurs to grow from millennials’ skulls, researchers say

Technology use from early childhood causing abnormal bone growths in 41 per cent of young adults

B.C. teen killed by fallen tree on field trip remembered as hero

13-year-old Tai Caverhill was the first to spot the tree falling and warned his friends

Surrey RCMP raises Pride flag amid din of protesters

There were about 30 protesters on either side, and 20 Mounties doing crowd control

Should B.C. get rid of Daylight Saving Time?

The province wants to know, as state governments down south make the move

Air Canada reviewing how crew left sleeping passenger on parked plane

In a Facebook post, the woman said she woke up ‘all alone’ on a ‘cold dark’ aircraft

Canadians crash out of Women’s World Cup in 0-1 loss to Sweden

Canada missed a chance to tie the game on a penalty shot

Four-year-old boy assaulted at B.C. soccer game

It happened at a weekend tournament in Ashcroft

Trial dates set for three men accused of 2017 killing near Hope

Lawyers for the accused appeared in Kelowna at B.C. Supreme Court on Monday

Most Read