B.C., Washington and Oregon fast-tracking high-speed rail corridor across Pacific Northwest

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Planning continues for a high-speed rail corridor linking Vancouver with Seattle and Portland.

The province’s costs are expected to be significantly lower than Washington and Oregon, but Premier John Horgan welcomes funding support from some high-profile private partners.

“Microsoft, for example, who have significant interests in Washington state and in B.C. see real potential and so do other companies like Amazon and other big players, as well as small players, in connecting us physically,” Horgan says.

Horgan met earlier this week in Seattle with Governor Jay Inslee who says there’s no turning back now.

“We have to make it more efficient to move more people faster and that’s where rail comes in. It’s a big deal. It’s a big investment, but for those who are confident about our future, it is a worthwhile one,” Inslee says.

Inslee adds the Pacific Northwest is the fastest growing area of North America, so boosting the capacity of this transportation corridor makes sense.

Greg D’Avignon, president and CEO of the Business Council of British Columbia, is confident construction could start soon.

D’Avignon says, “I think it can certainly happen in the next decade or two.”

He adds Vancouver, Seattle, and Portland are all cities surrounded by water with similar issues including rapid growth and robust economies requiring more connectivity.

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