Cornwall Chamber Chamber reacts strongly to VIA Announcement
Cornwall and Area Chamber of Commerce
With this decision, VIA has effectively eliminated business travel from Cornwall - That’s the reaction of a clearly exasperated Chamber President, Rick Shaver. He was responding to the announcement that VIA Rail was eliminating the early morning train from Cornwall and the evening ones from both Montreal and Toronto.
Cornwall - December 22, 2011 - With this decision, VIA has effectively eliminated business travel from Cornwall - That’s the reaction of a clearly exasperated Chamber President, Rick Shaver. He was responding to the announcement that VIA Rail was eliminating the early morning train from Cornwall and the evening ones from both Montreal and Toronto.
“These two scheduled times were key to the business community throughout the Cornwall region,” continued Shaver. “It provided professionals with close to a full day of activities in Toronto or Montreal without the need for the additional expense of an overnight stay. With the cancellations, they are now faced with the expense and hardship of up to a 400 km drive plus accommodation costs.”
The Chamber reaction has come as the result of a re-alignment of VIA services which reduced the number of trains stopping in Cornwall and the augmenting of service from Ottawa and Alexandria.
Shaver noted the Chamber has historically made it a point to work, in partnership with VIA Rail. It regularly promoted VIA services through its member newsletter and prominently featured the agency as a sponsor of its distinguished Business Excellence Awards banquet, an event that brings together over 250 of Cornwall’s leading business professionals. Some years back, it assisted VIA in the launch of its Montreal - Toronto overnight train by partnering with local media in writing a full page ‘travelogue’ to showcase the service.
“The Chamber has corresponded with VIA Rail President and CEO, Marc Laliberté, states Shaver. “We have assured him the business organization stands ready to continue to assist in promoting VIA as the transportation system of choice for the entire Cornwall region and upstate New York, a region well in excess of 80,000 people. In addition, we have offered to work with VIA in exploring options for departure times in each direction to compensate for the elimination of the morning and evening trains.”
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