Enderby targets railway input

Neighbouring jurisdictions invited to get on board Enderby's plans to purchase railway

Enderby wants to know if its neighbours are willing to buy a transportation corridor.

Council decided Monday to invite all jurisdictions from Sicamous to Spallumcheen to discuss how to ensure public access to 15 kilometres of railway track.

“We want to find out what their vision for the rail line is and we will get a better opportunity to deal with the provincial and federal governments if there is a unified approach,” said Mayor Howie Cyr.

“How do we leverage the funds to acquire it?”

Canadian Pacific’s contractor, Okanagan Valley Railway, ceased line operations in August 2009.

CP is seeking federal approval to abandon the line and the federal Canadian Transportation Agency lists the  total net value of the line as $3.2 million.

That value includes $1.8 million for the land, $1.2 million for the track and $105,338 for leases and agreements.

The Regional District of North Okanagan recently decided not to purchase the line because of the cost.

However, Cyr says the issue can’t be dropped because the property is critical to the long-term economic viability of local communities.

“There may be varying opinions on what it can be used for. Some may see it for transportation uses and others may look at it for recreation purposes,” he said.

A date for the meeting has not been set yet.