$350 million infrastructure plan for Ontario

Landscape view of the railroad at sunset

Good news for Canada’s most populous province, as Canadian National Railway announces a $350 million infrastructure plan for Ontario. And even better news for the planet as this investment will go toward not only ensuring the fluidity and safety of the network but also toward minimizing greenhouse gas emissions. This plan is a part of the $3 billion investment plan intended for the entire country. 

Where will the money go?

The portion of the capital plan dedicated to Ontario will focus on advancing technology, improving capacity, and maintaining the infrastructure. All of that will work towards enhancing safety, which is something CN values the most. As Derek Taylor, the railroad’s vice-president, Eastern Region, says, that two critical things allow CN to drive the Canadian economy. Firstly, it’s the consistent investment in the infrastructure and proactive approach to maintenance. It involves continuous investment in their track and technology, supporting the entire network. Secondly, it’s fantastic and critical work on the part of CN’s employees. Also, everyone who plays a role in the supply chain deserves mention. All things combined enable CN to provide their customers with a reliable and safe service.

The work planned

Here are some of the points included in the maintenance program:

  • 67 miles of rail is due for replacement
  • approximately 176,000 new railroad ties are planned to be installed
  • 85 road crossing surfaces need rebuilding
  • bridges, culverts, signal systems, and other track infrastructure maintenance.

Some additional information

As CN reports, here is some factual data:

  • Capital investments: More than $1.4 billion has been invested over the last five years
  • Employees: approximately 4,000 people work for CN
  • Railroad route miles operated: the system includes 2,546 miles of operational railways
  • Community partnerships: $3.7 million in 2020
  • Local spending: $2.3 billion in 2020
  • Cash taxes paid: $131 million in 2020

The environmental and economic aspect

As mentioned, this substantial investment plan and other construction activities will assist economic recovery while playing a significant role in minimizing pollution and being a part of the environmental solution. There is a good reason why we can expect such an outcome. Namely, a more efficient network will jumpstart the use of rail for long-distance transportation of goods. As a result, greenhouse gas emissions will decline.

Moreover, it is worth noting that CN is on CDP’s prestigious Climate A-List. And we should mention that only two other Canadian companies have found their place on the list. As a company that strives to maintain high environmental standards, Movers Toronto applauds CN’s efforts in lowering its ecological footprint. They understand the hardships that arise from such endeavors and are also well aware of the benefits they bring and the dangers of failing to do your best.

In addition, the announcement of this investment will likely help create more good middle-class jobs, according to Omar Alghabra, minister of transport. He also added that they would continue to keep Canadian citizens safe by supporting green projects such as this one. Moreover, he underlined that due to continuous work on the upgrades and updates of the network, Canada could boast one of the safest and most efficient rail transportation systems worldwide. 

All in all, this is a massive step towards economic recovery. The improved network will provide excellent, efficient, and safe services to the public, meet the demand for goods, as well as the future customer needs.

New connection to North America

In addition to the steps towards economic revival, efficient transport of goods and people to their destinations, CN expressed excitement regarding the future developments they have planned.

As Link2Build reports, in May, they have announced that a merger with Kansas City Southern, worth $33-billion, had been reached. Kansas City Southern is a rail carrier with extensive networks throughout the United States, Mexico, and Panama.

So, this merger will create a connection with North America and lead to building a top-notch railway suited for the 21st Century.  Once the U.S. Surface Transportation Board approves this merger, these two companies plan to develop faster and more direct routes that will connect Canada with some major American ports. These should be places like Mobile, Alabama, New Orleans, Laredo, Mexico, and more.

All of that is an effort to provide more to the customers and their employees and shareholders. Ultimately, entire communities will benefit greatly from such developments. Besides the transportation Network across North America, the merger between CN and Kansas City Southern will create healthy competition. Consequently, it will give economic growth an initial push and deliver fantastic benefits to the areas and communities where these two railroad companies operate.

Such a business decision helps form an excellent platform on which other industries can grow, leading to more capital investment and new job opportunities. 

The importance of sound railway system

The importance of transportation in the modern world is paramount. There is no industry that would not suffer dire consequences of hindered transportation service. Therefore, constant investment in rail infrastructure is crucial and excellent news. In this case, the recipient of this considerable investment plan is Ontario. Still, it’s undeniable that the effects of an enhanced network and increased safety will be far-reaching. 

Supply chains cannot survive without a good rail service. And many supply chains in Ontario rely heavily on these systems. Thus, provincial Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney underlines the importance of CN as a vital freight transportation company. It is essential for moving and delivering goods demanded by the numerous Ontario citizens.

We should remember that such heavy reliance on this rail system is due to its fantastic reliability. And the reason for that is the fact that as much as more than $1.4 billion in its capital stock has been invested in the network over the last five years alone, in Ontario only. 

Final comments on the $350 million infrastructure plan for Ontario

It’s obvious that CN is an industry leader, particularly in its commitment to sustainability and science-based change for the better. Their work results in a safer, more efficient network. Finally, together with KCS, they will create a cleaner and better-connected continent. And we can expect that the $350 million infrastructure plan for Ontario in only one event on what has been and will continue to be a path to further success and achievement.