Mayor Doug Craig to pitch province on Cambridge GO train line

Cambridge mayor Doug Craig will meet with provincial transportation minister Steven Del Duca at the end of July to pitch the idea of GO train service between Cambridge to Toronto.
Mayor Doug Craig had requested that the costs of cancelling the LRT system be made available to the public. His motion was defeated by a vote of 10-3. (Brian St. Denis/CBC)

Cambridge Mayor Doug Craig will meet with provincial Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca at the end of July to pitch the idea of GO train service between Cambridge and Toronto.

A representative from the Region of Waterloo and mayors from other cities along the proposed line will accompany Craig to the meeting on July 28.

On Tuesday, Premier Kathleen Wynne and Del Duca met with regional mayors and Regional Chair Ken Seiling to talk about GO Transit funding. No new announcements were made, but Craig said he was encouraged by what was discussed.

"The meeting...went extremely well. I'm very pleased with the comments of the premier and Minister Del Duca…regarding our efforts to bring GO train into Cambridge," Craig said.

"Obviously what we're seeing is that the province is on it, in terms of recognizing that they need to have greater connectivity into the Region of Waterloo, both the northern route into K-W and the new route that they're looking at from Milton to Cambridge." 

LRT to Cambridge still "decades" away

Funding for phase 2 of the light rail transit (LRT) line, which would extend the service from Fairview Park Mall into Cambridge, was not discussed during Tuesday's meeting with the premier.

"I don't think it's an omission at all. I think what it is, it's a reality. LRT coming to Cambridge is a considerable distance away, in terms of decades almost. I think the immediate concern, no question about it, is GO train, and for the region and for the city to work out the southbound re-road and bypass around Cambridge," Craig said.

The province has said that the region has not submitted a proposal requesting funding for phase 2.

"We don't have the ridership [for LRT] at this point," Craig said. "The only way we're going to get ridership is to bring the GO train into Cambridge....That's how you build your ridership. Once you build your ridership, then you can apply for LRT."

Craig said an environmental assessment scheduled for 2016 also needs to be completed before the region can request funding for phase 2.