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BREAKING: GO Transit Announces Two Trains to Guelph and Kitchener by End of 2011

Government officials and local MPs gathered in Waterloo Region earlier today to announce that work would begin to extend GO Train service on the Georgetown line west to Kitchener, serving stops in Guelph and Acton. A total of $18 million in spending was announced to provide a storage facility in Kitchener plus new ticketing agencies and stations in Kitchener, Guelph and Acton.

The full press release, courtesy Canadian Newswire, is as follows:

GO Transit is expanding train service to Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph and Acton

TORONTO, Nov. 12, 2010 /CNW/ - GO Transit will be expanding rail service on the Georgetown line to Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph and Acton, with service scheduled to begin by the end of 2011.

“We are pleased to be offering GO train service to Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph and Acton,” said GO Transit President Gary McNeil. “In partnership with the Province of Ontario and these regional municipalities, we can encourage existing commuters to leave their cars behind and use transit. This is also good news for existing Georgetown and Brampton customers who will have improved service as a result of this expansion.”

To begin offering train service by the end of next year, GO will be constructing new infrastructure - a storage facility in Kitchener and ticketing service at new stations in Acton, Guelph and Kitchener, as well as bringing an additional 54 new route-kilometres into to the system. This infrastructure will support two morning and two evening trains.

“This $18 million investment in expanded transit will ensure that the residents of Guelph, Acton, Kitchener-Waterloo and surrounding areas have more transit options when they travel between these communities or into the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA),” said Metrolinx President and CEO Bruce McCuaig. “We appreciate the continued support from the Province of Ontario to deliver Metrolinx’s important mandate to provide transit solutions.”

An Environmental Assessment (EA) for the expansion of train service from Georgetown to Kitchener-Waterloo was completed in 2009 and approved by the Minister of the Environment in January 2010.

GO Transit is the Province of Ontario’s regional public transit service linking Toronto with the surrounding regions of the GTHA. GO carries over 55 million passengers a year in an extensive network of train and bus services that spans over 10,000 square kilometres. GO Transit is a division of Metrolinx, the regional transportation authority for the GTHA.

There are still more details to come, such as whether this announcement covers a new station in Kitchener or the temporary use of the current VIA station (likely the latter), and whether or not a stop with ample parking will be built in Breslau. However, for residents in Waterloo Region who have been campaigning for more train service to Toronto, this announcement is something they have been waiting years for.

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