BLAINE(NEWS1130)- A grassroots push to create an Amtrak train stop in Blaine remains on track, with plenty of support for the idea coming from people here in BC.
The Blaine border station would put an end to an early morning Vancouver drive and parking search for 750-thousand potential train passengers living south of the Fraser River.
Tony Dolk is with a growing group named “We Can…Save Blaine Station” and is lobbying for the quick stop in his city.
“City council in Surrey and White Rock are both very keen on getting this moving. They see a station in White Rock as no longer viable,” he says.
Dolk says he’s also received dozens of letters in support for the project from British Columbians.
He says a potential stakeholders meeting held this week included reps from the Bellingham/Whatcom Tourism Bureau, Border Policy Research Institute at WWU, Port of Bellingham, Blaine Chamber of Commerce, an Immigration Law Firm and the Whatcom Council of Governments.
Also in attendance in Blaine for the meeting were White Rock City Councillor Grant Meyer, Surrey City Councillor Marvin Hunt and Ray Hudson with the Surrey Board of Trade.
Dolk says a three to five minute delay stopping at Blaine could be mitigated by rail improvements on either side of the border, and revealed discussions were underway with the provincial government.
A covered boardwalk from customs to Blaine station and TransLink service to the border were also discussed.
Blaine City Council and Amtrak will be talking later this month.
A train station in Olympia-Lacey, Washington conceived in a similar way now serves ten trains a day.