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Freight network: Investments into key corridors

por Patricia
linea ferroviaria de mercancias en Canada

The canadian regions have plans implemented to increase the freight transport capacity from west to east and via the coastline branches: the aim is to achieve greater fluidity within the traffic of each route.


Alberta includes some of the most relevant freight traffic-related projects. The railway is a key means, mainly for the oil, wood, forest and agricultural products transport performed by the CN and CP companies. Among them, the construction of a railway hub with the State of Alaska (US).

Moreover, the CN Company announced in April 2016, a multi-annual program to invest 500 million Canadian dollars (353 M€), so as to improve the infrastructure in railway lines in Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Some amounts aimed to provide a better service to the increase of more than 50% of the transport volume in the Western Canada, during the last five years.

Project: Improvement of the railway infrastructure belonging to the industry of tar sands
Location: Fort McMurray – Edmonton
Railway Company: Provincial Government, Northeast Alberta Transportation Corp.
Investment: 2600 M CAD (1,835 M€) (Highway and railway)
Extension: 435 kilometers
Construction period: 2012-2020

Project: Improvement of the railway infrastructures
Location: Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan
Railway Company: CN
Investment: 500 million Canadian dollars (353 M€)
Period: 2016-2017


British Columbia is a strategic region on the Pacific coastline. The commercial reference point of the North America’s West coast. In order to channel the Canadian and American trade flows with Asia, different supply chains (harbors, airports, railways and highways) are going to be integrated. Among the planned investments, of a private public nature, it is intended to increase the current infrastructure capacity so as to eliminate congestions and accelerate the intermodal transport operations. The aim is to respond to the substantial increase in the containerized and bulk traffic, respectively between Asia and North America via the Canadian corridors. During the 2016 fiscal year, 100 million dollars (70.5 M€) have already been awarded for the modernization of infrastructures, safety, new ballast and sleepers in the Region of Peace River, as indicated by its President, Claude Mongeau.

Project: Modernization of infrastructures and safety systems
Location: Region of Peace River (British Columbia)
Railway Company: CN
Investment: 100 million dollars (70.5 M€)
Construction period: 2018


Ontario has approved an investment of 3,500 million Canadian dollars (3,264 M€) for transport infrastructures in the next 10 years (highway, freeways and railway).

The “BuildON: Ontario’s Infrastructure Plan” program, together with the impetus to the urban transport, also anticipates a new freight corridor. For its construction, which benefits from the federal support, an agreement has been signed with the CN Company.

The idea was to find an alternative route for this type of transport between Milton and Brampton and thus avoiding crossing Guelph via a bypass. Thus the regional passenger connection would be improved after the track duplication and electrification works planned for this section up to Kitchener.

Project: New freight bypass in Ontario (Missing Link)
Location: Ontario
Railway Company: Agreement between Metrolinx and CN
Commissioning: 2024


The mining sector can be a good ally of the railway infrastructure construction companies. In Quebec, there are various examples, starting with the Cartier railway line, belonging to Arcelor Mittal, and up to the branches developed by Labrador Iron Mines or Consolidated Thompson. At present, the transport improvement is sustained within the Plan Nord of Quebec. The State Government has approved an investment of 914.2 million Canadian dollars (645 M€) for infrastructures. Among them, the capacity and efficiency improvement of the railway services between the Labrador Channel and the Sept-Îles Harbor, one of the major iron deposits.

◗ Plan Nord of Quebec project for infrastructures
Location: Labrador Channel and Sept-Îles Harbor
Railway Company:
Quebec North Shore and Labrador (QNSL)
Construction period: 2015-2020




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