Province Takes Next Step Towards Two-Way, All-Day GO Service on Kitchener Line

Go train rail transit captured by GTA weekly Toronto news

Future service will provide faster travel between Kitchener and Toronto

TORONTO — Today, the province and Metrolinx released the Preliminary Design Business Case that highlights the benefits of the two-way, all-day GO service project including more train service and shorter travel times as well as a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to add new station platforms and track upgrades. The Kitchener GO Rail Expansion project is part of the government’s plan to spark investment and support population growth in the Waterloo Region.

The announcement was made by Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation, Kinga Surma, Associate Minister of Transportation (GTA), Mike Harris, MPP for Kitchener–Conestoga and Amy Fee, MPP for Kitchener South–Hespeler.

“Our government is taking action to deliver significant advancements to GO service between Toronto and Kitchener that will bring more trips at every point along the line,” said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation. “This project will help build fast, frequent and reliable transit that will better support families and businesses along the entire corridor.”

The release of the Preliminary Design Business Case for Kitchener GO Rail Service Expansion highlights benefits including significant travel time savings for GO riders with train service every 15 minutes on core segments. The Kitchener line is projected to have 39,000 jobs and an estimated 54,000 residents living within approximately 10 minutes walking distance from a station with two-way, all-day service. The Kitchener line also forms the core of the Toronto-Waterloo Innovation corridor, a fast-growing innovation technology hub with a potential to see a growth of 170,000 jobs if the technology super cluster is realized.

“We are making great headway in our long-standing goal to better connect the thriving businesses and residential communities between Kitchener-Waterloo and Toronto,” said Kinga Surma, Associate Minister of Transportation (GTA). “By building this major transit project, our government is increasing the reliability of transit, reducing congestion and commute times while also supporting the growth of communities.”

In addition to releasing the Preliminary Design Business Case, Metrolinx has issued an RFQ to move ahead with procurement for improved infrastructure between Georgetown and Kitchener. Interested parties are now invited to submit their proposals to Metrolinx.

The RFQ package includes infrastructure improvements at Acton GO Station and Guelph Central Station that will help enable two-way train service, new maintenance of tracks, other track upgrades that will allow for higher train speeds.

The province has also recently completed significant work on the Kitchener GO Rail line with the complete excavation of the twin tunnels under Highways 401 and 409 to increase train capacity on the corridor and continues to work closely with CN Rail to increase GO Train service for two-way, all-day service.

As outlined in the 2021 BudgetOntario’s Action Plan: Protecting People’s Health and Our Economy, a key element of the government’s plan is investment in infrastructure, including strategic investments in transit, highways, schools, hospitals and broadband. Planned investments over the next 10 years total $145.4 billion, including $16.9 billion in 2021–22. These investments help stimulate job creation and economic growth and are vital to support COVID‑19 relief efforts.


Quick Facts

  • By 2041, the service is forecasted to attract between 10.9 million to 11 million annual boardings and reduce annual vehicle kilometres travelled by 16.2 million kilometres.
  • An estimated 2.3 million people and 1.4 million jobs will be located within 5 km of an existing GO station along the Kitchener line by 2031.
  • Travel time is estimated to be approximately 90 minutes between Kitchener GO station and Union Station, down from 111 minutes.

Quotes

“This is a huge win for Waterloo Region. Through the continued work of this provincial government, our community will see major upgrades in service with less wait times, more flexibility and direct trips between Union Station and Kitchener.”

– Mike Harris
MPP for Kitchener–Conestoga

“The Kitchener GO Rail Expansion project will benefit residents throughout Waterloo Region. Our government is taking the first steps toward shovels in the ground in this massive project.”

– Amy Fee
MPP for Kitchener South–Hespeler

“We are getting people moving with fast and efficient transit. This is great for Mississauga and for all those who will travel on the Kitchener line.”

– Deepak Anand
MPP for Mississauga–Malton

“These advancements on the Kitchener corridor will connect more hardworking people to job and housing opportunities and help kick-start the economy here in Brampton and beyond.”

– Prabmeet Sarkaria
MPP for Brampton South

“With this announcement, people in Brampton will have more travel options and direct connections across cities the Kitchener line services.”

– Amarjot Sandhu
MPP for Brampton West

“The Kitchener GO Rail Expansion will transform the line into a true frequent rapid transit experience with more trips at every station and across seven municipalities. We are excited to support safe and accessible travel that meets the diverse needs of riders, from Kitchener-Waterloo to Halton Hills to Toronto.”

– Phil Verster
President and CEO of Metrolinx

“Today’s announcement is a giant leap forward by the province. We’re thrilled by the government’s deep commitment to making two-way, all-day GO a reality by 2025, unlocking the potential to deliver over 170,000 new jobs, billions in new direct investment, a significant reduction in congestion-related greenhouse gases and a tangible improvement in quality of life of the millions of Ontarians who call the Innovation Corridor home. Thanks to Premier Doug Ford, Minister of Transportation Caroline Mulroney, Associate Minister Kinga Surma and Metrolinx CEO Phil Verster for their ongoing collaboration.”

– Ian McLean
Chair of Connect The Corridor Coalition / President and CEO of Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce

“The efficient movement of people and goods in Canada’s Innovation Corridor is a major contributor to our province’s economy. Today’s announcement is a major step forward by the Ontario Government in delivering corridor-wide transit and providing the economic boost we’ll need post-pandemic. For years, congestion has been holding the corridor back – costing the Greater Toronto Area alone $6 billion in lost productivity annually. This is one of several steps we can take toward a more coordinated and connected regional rail system that can serve new passenger needs and clear up congestion for years to come.”

– Jan De Silva
President and CEO of Toronto Region Board of Trade

“Two-way, all-day GO will enhance the global competitiveness of Canada’s Innovation Corridor. This game-changing investment in critical infrastructure will be a magnet for talent and capital in the region. We applaud the government for taking a significant step forward in unlocking the opportunity for Ontario businesses to turbocharge their growth and move our province’s economy forward.”

– Iain Klugman
CEO of Communitech

“By continuing to advance two-way, all-day GO service along the Kitchener line, today the Ontario Government demonstrated its confidence in Waterloo region as one of our province’s key economic engines. This is a transformative project. Keeping us well connected ensures that the economic benefits accrued to this region can be shared with the rest of the province.”

– Karen Redman
Chair of the Region of Waterloo

“Two-way, all-day GO rail service on the Kitchener line will be an economic game-changer for Kitchener, the region and the Toronto-Waterloo Innovation Corridor. In the post-COVID economy, we will need these strategic, significant long-term transit investments to create jobs, reduce our carbon footprint, and to foster our continued economic growth. We thank the provincial government for today’s budget announcement of significant rail investments between Kitchener and Georgetown and look forward to more details as we continue moving this transformational project forward.”

– Berry Vrbanovic
Mayor of Kitchener

“Scaling employers along the Toronto-Waterloo Region corridor fuels their growth with top talent, as they compete on a global stage. Quick and frequent mobility is key, and this foundational investment is a huge step forward towards all-day, two-way GO train service. Companies worldwide that are looking to expand will certainly see Ontario’s talent pool as an attractive place to set up shop and create jobs.”

– Dave Jaworsky
Mayor of Waterloo

“This investment means greater connectivity and opportunity for our entire region. Today’s announcement is the next step to deliver two-way, all-day GO to the Region of Waterloo. We continue to see growth and investment here in Cambridge and the region that will lead to overall prosperity. This is excellent news for businesses, families and visitors alike.”

– Kathryn McGarry
Mayor of Cambridge

“The world class post-secondary institutions that line the Innovation Corridor play a pivotal role in training Ontario’s future leaders. Fast, frequent transit along the Toronto-Guelph-Waterloo corridor will facilitate collaboration, partnerships and hands-on learning that is required for the success of our students.”

– Dr. Charlotte Yates
President of the University of Guelph

“This significant step towards two-way, all-day GO train service by 2025 is great news for Guelph and every city along Ontario’s Innovation Corridor. The combined advocacy efforts of Innovation Corridor cities and business leaders are paying off. We thank the provincial government for this considerable investment and look forward to hearing more details in the near future. Two-way, all-day GO will create more productivity, more jobs, and more economic growth – all of which are needed now more than ever, as we recover from the economic impacts of COVID-19.”

– Cam Guthrie
Mayor of Guelph

“Manulife has long been a supporter of the two-way, all-day GO service between Kitchener and Union Station. With large offices at both ends of the line, we are very pleased to see fast, reliable and environmentally friendly transit being expanded between the two hubs. This exciting development helps to encourage strong investment in our home regions and allows companies such as Manulife to compete better globally.”

– Mike Doughty
President and CEO of Manulife Canada

“Today’s announcement from the province about the significant investment of infrastructure work in the Guelph subdivision to improve two-way, all-day GO service is a huge win for the Guelph business community. This investment will unleash and attract diverse and cutting-edge talent, increase employee retention, and will boost the economic climate for business competitiveness. I’m looking forward to this work that will improve the movement of people across the region, contribute to economic prosperity and solidify the important position Guelph holds along the Innovation Corridor.”

– Shakiba Shayani
President and CEO of Guelph Chamber of Commerce

“As one of Canada’s fastest growing cities and home to many of our country’s top employers, today’s announcement boosts Brampton’s competitive advantage. Local employers will now have access to a much larger talent pool. Today’s announcement takes us one step closer to better connecting jobseekers and businesses across the Innovation Corridor. Better regional connectivity benefits all Ontarians.”

– Todd Letts
CEO of the Brampton Board of Trade

SOURCE  Province of Ontario

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