Canadian National (CN) has announced plans to invest about CA$340 million (US$263 million) across British Columbia this year to grow and strengthen the railroad's network in the province.
“We are investing for the long haul with these projects to boost capacity and network resiliency to meet growing traffic on our corridors to and from the West Coast and across B.C.,” said Doug Ryhorchuk, vice president of CN’s Western Region. “Our investments in infrastructure, equipment and people will help us deliver superior service to our customers across the province and North America. Additionally, our substantial investments to renew our existing railway infrastructure underscore our commitment to operating safely.”
The B.C. investments are part of the Class 1’s CA$3.4 billion (US$2.63 billion) capital program for 2018 and involve critical track expansion projects that aim to boost capacity, officials said.
The program will also focus on replacing, revamping and maintaining key track infrastructure to enhance safety and efficiency.
Planned expansion projects include the construction of four new passing sidings between Prince Rupert and Jasper, Alberta, as well as the extension of three passing sidings between Prince Rupert and Jasper.
A siding extension is also planned north of Kamloops on CN’s Vancouver to Edmonton corridor.
Maintenance program highlights entail the replacement of about 115 miles of rail, as well as the installation of more than 335,000 new crossties.
The railroad is also set to rebuild approximately 50 crossing surfaces and perform maintenance on bridges, including a continuation of the multi-year maintenance project on the Fraser River Bridge.
Additional maintenance work will be done for culverts, signal systems and other track infrastructure.
CN’s B.C. rail network serves the West Coast gateways of Vancouver and Prince Rupert, and major inland terminals in Surrey, Prince George, Kamloops and Fort Nelson.
“These major capital investments are a sign of CN’s commitment to its operations in B.C., which continues to lead Canada in economic growth,” said Carla Qualtrough, member of Parliament for Delta, B.C. “CN’s infrastructure investments this year throughout B.C. will help strengthen local economies, support good middle class jobs and further solidify B.C.’s economic advantage as Canada’s Pacific Gateway.”