WINNIPEG — City councillor Russ Wyatt’s plan to delay the Waverley Street underpass project received next to no support at City Hall on Wednesday.
The Transcona councillor’s motion said the newly formed provincial task force on railway relocation should be allowed to do its job before construction on the underpass begins.
“It won’t happen overnight but at the same time, the argument it’s going to take decades, well why are we having this task force in the first place? Is this serious? Is this a serious effort?” said Wyatt.
Wyatt’s motion was easily voted down 14-2. Nearly all councillors who voted against it said it would be too risky to jeopardize the funding that has already been guaranteed by the federal and provincial governments for the underpass project.
“We’ve secured 90 million dollars of the project from senior levels of government and so yes, on that basis we need to proceed with it,” said Mayor Brian Bowman.
Most also pointed to the possibility that rail lines may never actually be moved and if they were it would likely be decades before the work begins.
Wyatt also put forward a separate motion to change the funding model between the city and CN Rail.
Currently there is an agreement in place that means the city will owe CN Rail if rail lines are moved outside the city in the future.
That motion was also voted down.