Toronto/St. Catharines Study Possible High-Speed Ferry

A joint study involving the Toronto Harbour Commission (THC) recently revealed that a high-speed ferry service between St. Catharines and Toronto is economically feasible.

During the summer of 1980, a regularly scheduled hydrofoil service operated between Niagara-onthe- Lake and downtown Toronto on Lake Ontario. The service was popular with shoppers and tourists, but was discontinued for reasons unrelated to market demand.

In November 1990, Wavetrain Inc., a Canadian corporation, entered into an agreement with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation to investigate the viability of a highspeed ferry service for commuters from one or more ports on Lake Ontario to downtown Toronto. Based on the analysis conducted by the various consultants, the conclusions of the study include: there are several harbors that could accommodate ferry service; the Lakeshore West corridor (Hamilton-downtown Toronto) offers the best opportunity for a high-speed ferry providing commuter service; a cross-lake highspeed ferry service could be viable if sufficient numbers of Toronto commuters move to St. Catharines of if the non-commuter market such as tourists, shoppers and occasional users is captured; and the idea of a high-speed ferry to downtown Toronto was favorably received by current commuters, particularly those residing in the St. Catharines area.

The market decided upon would determine the vessel size, the appropriate terminal and the operating schedule.

Other stories from April 1992 issue


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