Clean Train Coalition ponders appeal after losing...
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Nov 22, 2012  |  Vote 0    0

Clean Train Coalition ponders appeal after losing court battle over diesel trains

Bloor West Villager

The Clean Train Coalition is mulling an appeal after losing a legal bid to re-open a decision to run diesel trains along the air rail link (ARL).

The west-end residents’ group had sought a judicial review of a decision by Metrolinx to purchase 18 diesel trains from manufacturer Sumitomo Corporation of America last year on the grounds the provincial transit planning agency “exceeded its jurisdiction” by not first conducting a feasibility study for electrifying the link.

But a panel of three Ontario Superior Court judges hearing the case disagreed with the coalition saying in a four-page judgement Metrolinx was required by statute to accept direction from the province - which set the deadline of 2015 for the ARL’s completion and mandated running of diesel trains.

The panel, made up of justices Katherine Swinton, Frances Kitely and Renee Pomerance, also ordered Clean Train to pay Metrolinx legal costs of $30,000 as well as additional court costs of $3,500.

Following the judgement, Clean Train chair Rick Ciccarelli said the group was considering appealing the verdict.

“We are disappointed with this bad decision. But the matter is not settled, far from it. We will consider our right to appeal to a higher court,” he wrote in an email sent Wednesday, Nov. 21.

He said the group would factor in legal costs before deciding to file an appeal.

Metrolinx also released a statement welcoming the verdict.

The decision came just two days after the group presented its case in a downtown courtroom.

“What we are asking is for Metrolinx to go back and do a thorough analysis for electric, as well as diesel, and make a decision,” said Ciccarelli at the time.

Metrolinx was requested by the province to coordinate construction of a 3.3 kilometre rail spur to Terminal 1 of Pearson International Airport which will connect via the Georgetown South GO rail corridor to Union Station downtown. The project is part of the province’s Big Move transportation plan.

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