At a ceremony in Cobourg, Ontario, Northumberland-Quinte West MP Rick Norlock, Mayor Peter Delanty and John Marginson, VIA Rail Canada's Chief Operating Officer, said VIA plans a new station with improved and expanded facilities. VIA estimates that it will invest as much as C$7 million for the new station and related improvements from recent capital funding for VIA announced by the Government of Canada. C$1 million of the project's cost will come from the government's Economic Action Plan.
VIA’s new Cobourg station
will be a fully-accessible and aesthetically-pleasing structure adjacent to the
existing building. VIA is currently studying options for the design of the new
station, with the final design to be selected later this year.
Whatever design is selected
for the new Cobourg station, the preservation of the existing structure is
assured. Discussions will soon begin with the Town of Cobourg regarding the
preferred future use of this historic building. The existing heritage-designated
building, opened in 1911, is no longer large enough to accommodate all
customers at peak travel periods.
previously-announced, C$300-million Kingston Subdivision Project will add new
main line tracks and will include rearranging the track layout in some
locations to increase safety, capacity and service reliability. In Cobourg,
this involves adding one new main line track and a second platform, which
cannot be done while still making use of the existing station.
"Cobourg’s connection with and
affection for the railways goes back to 1856, when the Grand Trunk’s first
train steamed into town," said Cobourg Mayor Peter Delanty. "It brought
with it so many opportunities for this town to grow and prosper. I’m convinced
these VIA projects can and will do the same today."
VIA’s Cobourg Station
Project is linked with other work now or soon to be under way throughout the
Quebec-Windsor Corridor, which generates almost 90 percent of VIA’s ridership
and 75 percent of its revenue. In combination, these projects will allow for
increases in VIA train safety, frequency and on-time performance, as well as
reductions in travel time.
Major upgrading work is
also under way on key elements of VIA’s locomotive and rolling stock fleets for
intercity, transcontinental and remote service. Other infrastructure projects
are aimed at improving service quality and cost efficiency at other points
across VIA’s coast-to-coast route network. These upgrades are part of an
unprecedented C$923-million capital investment in passenger rail modernization
and expansion by the Government of Canada that is stimulating job creation,
skills development and private sector activity across the country.