The railway will invest $120 million to strengthen its provincewide network
By Diego Flammini
One of Canada’s national railways is planning a significant investment in Western Canada this year.
Canadian National will spend $120 million in 2019 to bolster its railway network in Manitoba, the company announced on Monday.
New construction projects will include a new train passing siding near Nourse, Man., east of Winnipeg, and 10 km (6.3 miles) of double track near Exira, Man., west of Portage la Prairie.
Crews will also replace more than 56 km (35 miles) of track, install about 59,000 new railroad ties and rebuild 13 rail crossings along with other general maintenance.
The investment in Manitoba will benefit several sectors, said Dan Vandal, member of Parliament for Saint Boniface-Saint Vital.
“Rail is a fundamental link for farmers and producers on the Prairies. Investments such as these by CN are critical to ensuring that our Prairie products reach their markets, both nationally and internationally,” he said in a statement.
Farmers welcome CN’s planned investment.
Any improvements designed to help products reach export destinations is a good news, said Dennis Thiessen, a producer from Steinbach, Man., and president of the Manitoba Corn Growers Association.
“I would think this is great news,” he told Farms.com. “Farmers need efficient railways to get our grain from our farms to our customers. Let’s hope CN’s commitment to Manitoba can help get more ag products to ports.”
The multimillion-dollar investment in Manitoba is part of CN’s overall spending commitments for 2019.
The organization has set aside $3.9 billion to improve its rail capacity in 2019. That amount includes more locomotives and grain hopper cars, as well as rail improvements between Edmonton, Alta. and Vancouver, B.C.