After a long and contentious battle, the tracks are finally coming out along Vancovuer’s Arbutus Rail Corridor.
Work starts Monday to pull the rail line up from the 9km stretch of tracks that run from
The city of Vancouver purchased the land from Canadian Pacific Railway back in March, and plans to install a new urban greenway on it.
The city has announced that work to pull the rail line from the strip of land will begin next week.
It’s asking people to avoid the area, where removal will be conducted by heavy equipment from 7 am to 8 pm Monday-Saturday, and 10 am to 8pm on Sundays.
Joggers and other recreational users will also be temporarily blocked from the site while the heavier work is being undertaken.
The work is predicted to move along at the pace of about a kilometer a week.
As a part of the sale to the city signed in March, Canadian Pacific Railway will be responsible for removing all of the tracks, except at street crossings – which will be the city’s job.
The city is proposing an ambitious public greenway along the 42 acres of land, running about nine kilometers from Milton Street to 1st Ave.
It would create a single continuous pathway for walkers or cyclists from Marpole in South Vancouver to False Creek, connecting with the Seawall network.
The city says it plans to have a greenway project office up and running by the end of summer, and will be holding informal public information sessions along the line during the summer months.
Formal consultations will kick off in the fall.
The city bought the land for $55-million after a bitter two-year dispute with CP Rail over its future.
That conflict saw court dates, the involvement of a federal regulator, and the rail company begin clearing the track and threatening to return it into active use for trains.
As a part of that work, it also pulled up community gardens that had been in place for years, but were on the company’s property. CP apologized to gardeners after the sale went through.
The key sticking point was a price for the land, with the city assessing it at $20 million, and the CP arguing it was worth $1oo million.