GO train a 'high priority,' says Wynne

By Kris Dube / News Editor
May 29, 2014
GO train a 'high priority,' says Wynne
Premier Kathleen Wynne at Niagara College's Niagara-on-the-Lake campus on Thursday.

NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE - Premier Kathleen Wynne says she has a plan to bring daily GO train service to Niagara – and that a firm commitment is already laid out in her budget.

The spending plan and cause of the upcoming June 12 provincial election, contains $29 billion for transit and transportation infrastructure across the province, with $14 billion planned to benefit areas outside the Toronto and Hamilton areas.

On Thursday, during a press conference at Niagara College's Niagara-on-the-Lake campus, Wynne said bringing improved and more frequent rail service to the area is a realistic possibility.

“What I know is that increased GO service in this region is a very, very high priority,” she said while visiting the campus' greenhouse.

It's a long track ahead but her government does have a “feasible plan” for Niagara that it will continue putting together, if it remains in power after the election.

“That is one of the projects that is under consideration,” said Wynne.

Earlier this month, the City of Niagara Falls took one step further in its interest of attracting a university campus to its downtown core by handing $10,000 over to the area's Business Improvement Association – to instigate a recruitment process with potential institutions.

Wynne said the province wants to expands its university capacity and that about 50 municipalities have already shown enthusiasm for this possibility, as Requests for Proposals are already being accepted.

“My hope is they will take part in the RFP process – and we won't jump to any conclusions – but it's a very exciting possibility,” said Wynne.

The premier visited the college to tour its horticultural program's facilities, also promoting the Liberals' plans for postsecondary education.

She was accompanied by the region's local Liberal candidates: Jim Bradley (St. Catharines), David Mossey (Niagara-West Glanbrook), Benoit Mercier (Welland) and Lionel Tupman (Niagara Falls).

Tupman told Bullet News Niagara after the press conference – he wasn't surprised to hear Wynne tell reporters that daily GO train service is something she is committed to – but was “glad to hear it reaffirmed.”

Since stepping onto the campaign trail, he says he has been criticized for publicly speaking about the need for improved rail service in Niagara – as his opposition claims the Liberals are leaving Niagara off the map when investing in transportation.

He said Wynne “clearly stated it's been earmarked in the budget.”