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VIDEO: Newly elected Kelowna councillor Gord Lovegrove remains committed to getting his 'Tram Train' idea on track

UBCO professor Gord Lovegrove credits his success in the municipal election, in part, to how close he came last time around.

"I was the first loser, I was number nine, my name was known, so thank you everybody!" he said with a laugh.

But he remains quite serious about an idea many others might laugh off.

The 'tram-train'.

The question is, will it be derailed before it pulls out of the station.

"I do think council will listen," he said, "and I think I will have to have the answers ready for when they do give me that opportunity to talk it over with them."

<who>Photo credit: NowMedia </who>

And he's already seen promising signals from the new group.

"The fact that Ron Cannan talked about it as part of his platform, and others have been talking about it as well."

Cannan, the former Member of Parliament and former city councillor and broadcaster Rick Webber join Lovegrove to make up the trio of new council members voted in.

The rail system Lovegrove envisions would use existing highways and major road right-of-ways without necessarily widening them.

<who>Photo credit: Contributed </who>

The 'Tram Train' can use tracks on the centre median or down the side, and he sees it running not just through Kelowna, but connecting with neighbouring cities as well.

The rail idea dovetails with Lovegrove's classes at UBCO.

"I'm teaching this right now, Thursday in my lecture on railway engineering," he said.

"We've got a world expert on tram-trains talking about it."

Lovegrove promises to press his council colleagues and the public as well.

"I know that there is interest. We have to solve our congestion problems and we can't afford more roads."

Critics would argue that such a system is too expensive for a region like ours to support, but he said it's less expensive than the alternative.

"It's half the cost of any roadwork, widening and a second bridge," Lovegrove argues.

And he said his campaign door-knocking revealed enormous support from the public.

"Of the 11 thousand people I talked to, I think I met one. I think he was a heart surgeon who wanted to drive his Porsche, that didn't want to get on that tram-train."

The new council will be sworn in, Nov 7.




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