No provincial pledge for rail corridor

The provincial government isn’t willing to preserve a local rail corridor yet

Enderby Mayor Greg McCune

Enderby Mayor Greg McCune

The provincial government isn’t willing to preserve a local rail corridor yet.

Representatives from the North Okanagan and Columbia-Shuswap regional districts discussed the abandoned rail line from Spallumcheen to Sicamous with provincial officials at Thursday’s Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Victoria.

“They are in favour of it but there was no commitment,” said Greg McCune, Enderby mayor.

“We wanted to see what their thoughts are but they don’t have any thoughts because it (acquisition process) doesn’t exist to them right now.”

Led by the Splatsin First Nation, local jurisdictions have been considering ways to acquire the former Canadian Pacific corridor.

McCune believes the Spallumcheen to Sicamous corridor could create economic benefits for the region now that a similar trail project from Coldstream to Kelowna is proceeding.

“We want an opportunity to continue that,” he said.

While at UBC, McCune and Enderby council also met with the Ministry of Transportation to discuss traffic congestion along Highway 97A.

“Is twinning the solution? We have to look at how that goes,” said McCune.

The other issue on the radar was the Shuswap River and possible motor boat restrictions.

Herman Halvorson, rural Enderby director, met with Forests Minister Steve Thomson about RDNO’s plan to hire a consultant to see if consensus can be found among boat users and non-boat users.

“I don’t want him to get blind-sided,” said Halvorson of Thomson.

“I informed him of how we got started with the process.”