The provincial government took another step towards building a high speed rail line through southwestern Ontario, forming an advisory committee to consult with the private sector, stakeholders and Indigenous communities.

Premier Kathleen Wynne announced Monday the Planning Advisory Board would be made up of individuals with expertise in high tech, engineering, environmental and transportation planning to help guide the long awaited project. 

Bombardier high-speed train

Bombardier's high-speed train, which it has sold to China. Reuters reports the company has turned down a Chinese offer for majority stake in its rail division. (Bombardier Transportation)

"This has never been done in Canada before and so we need to draw on rail and community expertise," Wynne said in a speech at the Greater Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber of Commerce. 

For three decades, governments have discussed building a rail link between Windsor and Toronto, with stops along way in cities such as Chatham-Kent and London. 

In May, Wynne's government announced it was moving forward with a plan to build trains travelling as fast as 250 km/h, cutting in half rail travel time along the corridor.

Proposed map for high-speed rail in southern Ontario

This map shows a proposed high-speed rail network in southern Ontario. (Ontario Ministry of Transportation)

The announcement followed a report commissioned by the province that determined the speedy rail line would be feasible.

Accused Monday of making high speed rail an election issue, Wynne defended the formation of the board as a necessary step to get the train rolling. 

"If high speed rail could be finished immediately after the election, then I would say that was a legitimate accusation. This is about a vision for the province that will stand us in good stead for generations to come," said Wynne.

The province has set up a link on its webpage so people can find out more about the issues involved in building the rail line.