CN plans $277m expansion of rail infrastructure in Alberta


Canadian National Railway (CN) has announced plans to invest around C$370m ($277m) across Alberta in 2019 to expand the company’s rail network throughout the province.

The investments in Alberta are part of a $3.9bn ($2.9bn) capital investment in 2019 to facilitate growth from all commodity segments, including consumer goods, grain, agricultural, forest and energy products from all customers.

CN’s western region vice president Doug Ryhorchuk said: “Following a record capital program in 2018, CN has been able to take on more traffic from different commodity sectors based on contracts with our customers.

“This year, CN is planning a new record capital investment in Alberta to continue boosting capacity and network resiliency and to meet growing traffic on our corridors across the Province.”

CN is expected to make a capital invest of C$7.4bn ($5.5bn) over two years.

Currently, the company is deploying safety enhancing technologies, including the Autonomous Track Inspection Program, Distributed Air Cars and Automated Inspection Portals, across the network.

The investments in locomotives, capacity, infrastructure and train crews, and the innovations taken up by CN are expected to support the safe and efficient transportation of goods to their end markets.

The company’s planned expansion projects include construction of 12 miles of double track between Leaman and Nilton, west of Edmonton; five miles of double track near Entrance, east of the Alberta-British Columbia border; seven miles of double track near Greenshields, east of Edmonton; and new tracks at Scotford Yard northeast of Edmonton to increase yard capacity.

Maintenance programme taken up by CN include replacement of more than 90 miles of rail; installation of approximately 210,000 new railroad ties; rebuilding of 44 road-crossing surfaces; and maintenance work on bridges, culverts, signal systems and other infrastructure.

Edmonton Centre Member of Parliament Randy Boissonnault said: “I appreciate CN making critical investments in Alberta that will help to grow our economy, create jobs, and ensure that Alberta and Western Canadian consumers continue to have access to key markets.”

The company’s rail network in Alberta includes key terminals in Edmonton and Calgary, serving customers in forest products, intermodal, agricultural and energy markets across the province.


Image: A CN freight train in Jasper, Alberta. Photo: Courtesy of Canadian National Railway Company.

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