Will Canada invest in and modernize VIA Rail?

Elizabeth May

Mr. Speaker, Rails to Relevance is an annual project of Claremont high school, bringing bright young kids from this great public high school to Ottawa by rail—by VIA Rail.

The Canadian Transportation Act review by the Hon. David Emerson recommended that Canada cease to have a national passenger rail service. Can the Minister of Transport reassure this House that Canada is committed to national passenger rail, and will invest in and modernize a national VIA Rail service?

Marc Garneau – Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, our government is committed to rail passenger service for Canadians. We have always been committed to it. I am a regular rail user. Once a week I go between Montreal and Toronto. I have had the pleasure of going across the country from Halifax to Vancouver. In fact, I would encourage Canadians who have never taken the train to go out and try that mode of transport. I think they would find it a very pleasant way to move across and to enjoy this magnificent country.