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FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Canadian National (CN) expects to continue its growth over the next few years, including in the Peace region.
According to a report from trains.com, CN expects growth from its ports in B.C. and multiple new projects in the north.
“The one thing I really want to highlight is our northern network. When you talk to the operations team, they’re going to say, ‘Man, it sucks operating in the north, especially in the winter,’” Chief Marketing Officer Doug MacDonald said during CN’s investor day on Wednesday.
“But what you’re going to see is that’s where all the development is.”
According to the article, northeast B.C. is seeing an increase in forest products, natural gas drilling and mining, including copper, zinc and ores, that will account for 80,000 to 90,000 new carloads annually over the next three years.
CN reportedly has 17 different projects and 17 different customers in the area.
“There’s potential to double the volume in this region,” said Kelly Levis, vice president of industrial products.
The Energetic City will become a rail hub for products moving in and out of the northeast, according to the article.
CN is upgrading a partition of the Chetwynd and Fort St. John subdivisions to handle the new traffic.
“The best way I can describe this line is it truly is a diamond in the rough, one we’ve started to polish just a little bit and are starting to see some shine on,” said James Thompson, vice president of transportation for CN’s Western Region.
Before 2018, CN hauled less than 4,000 carloads on that line. Over the last couple of years, CN has installed new ties and rail to boost track speeds and, in the next two years, will add a pair of passing sidings.
CN believes it can add up to 900,000 new carloads and intermodal containers to the system by 2026.
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