Photo: Clive Doucet’s proposed Capital Region Rail system.
Mayoral candidate Clive Doucet’s plan for a regional rail system in Ottawa wouldn’t send trains into the heart of Stittsville.
Rather, there would be a station somewhere between Carp and Stittsville along an existing branch line that runs through Kanata North.
Doucet unveiled his “Capital Region Rail” plan earlier in September, saying it’s time for Ottawa to get a regional rail service similar to Toronto’s GO Train system.
“We will run trains on rail lines that already exist in the National Capital Region, making this a cost-effective solution to get 20,000 cars off the 417, reduce our carbon footprint, open our city for business, and connect the four corners of the National Capital Region. This plan will integrate itself with our present OC Transpo system,” Doucet’s website says.
Because his system map shows a line running from Bells Corners into Stittsville and Carp, a few people raised questions on how that would work, given no rail lines actually run through Stittsville. Some wondered if Doucet was proposing to re-lay tracks on the Trans-Canada Trail, which formerly was a rail line.
(The City of Ottawa considered doing that for Phase 3 LRT but decided a future rail line should run parallel to Highway 417 instead.)
Doucet’s campaign says they’re not going to rip up the trail if Doucet is elected Oct. 22.
“Stittsville will be served at the beginning by a station between Stittsville and Carp along the rail line with the terminus at Kinburn,” said campaign spokesperson Anne-Marie Roy in an email to this newspaper. “We will not be using the former rail bed that is used for cycling (TCT) and there will be no additional cost for tracks since our plan does not require laying down any new track.”
The campaign website links to OpenRailwayMap, which shows an active branch line running through Kanata North to Carp. The campaign said the exact location of the Stittsville/Carp station would be subject to a request for proposal process once in office, but it would presumably be near Huntmar Drive or Carp and March Roads for access to both Carp and Stittsville.
The proposed Capital Region Rail system is in addition to, and would not replace, the Stage 2 and Stage 3 LRT plans in their current form — Phase 3 including a station to Stittsville post-2031.
“We fully support the construction of the LRT going forward,” Roy said.