Although the United States have actually taken steps to implement high-speed networks, Canada is the only country of the G8 that has no line of this nature.
Even so, during the last years, the national debate regarding the development of sections considered to be essential has increased. Among them, the vast majority from North to South. The objective was to connect the main Canadian cities between them (Quebec-Windsor, Calgary- Edmonton) and also with the closest ones to the U.S. (Vancouver-Seattle, Toronto-Chicago and Montreal-Boston and New York). Currently, these are only in a study phase, without a firm progress or a private public funding.
Possible studied routes
There are four possible routes in Ontario: Windsor-Quebec, Windsor-Chicago Toronto-Cleveland and Toronto-New York. The most densely populated and industrialized region from Canada is precisely located between the cities of Quebec and Windsor. Half of the country’s population and three of the four most important metropolitan areas are concentrated here. Currently, various feasibility studies have been undertaken, but no date has been specified.
In addition, two more routes are studied in Quebec: Montreal-Boston and Montreal-New York. In the second case, the passenger traffic service is highly limited between New York and Montreal. For this reason, the Transport Department of the New York State and the Ministry of Transport of Quebec started the feasibility studies for a high-speed connection between New York and Montreal. The corridor will be divided into three sections: New York-Albany-Rouses Point and Montreal.
As for Alberta, the Edmonton-Calgary line is being discussed. Three options are assessed for this region as regards the railway infrastructure routes. The first of them is to improve an existing freight section belonging to Canadian Pacific. An amount of 1,800 million Canadian dollars (1,279 million Euros) is estimated. The second option would be to create a new track for the passenger traffic, called “Green Field”. This would cost 2,200 million Canadian dollars (1,564 million Euros).
Thirdly, an electrified version of the “Green Field” is planned, which would be the most expensive option of these three, exceeding the amount of 3,700 million Canadian dollars (2,631 million Euros).