Railpace Newsmagazine

News From Canada

NEWS FROM CANADA covers from east of the Manitoba/Ontario border to the Atlantic Ocean, a very far-ranging geographic area. Canadian National (CN) and Canadian Pacific (CPR) operate east from Windsor (CP/CN) and Sarnia (CN), Ontario, one to terminate in Montreal, the other east to Halifax, in Nova Scotia. VIA operates an intensive passenger service in the Windsor-Sarnia to Quebec City corridor; there is a VIA rail passenger route to the Gaspe and one to Halifax as well - these routes are operated CN and privately owned regional lines. In addition VIA's Canadian operates from Toronto's Union Station to Vancouver in British Columbia. Amtrak operates regular service to Toronto, through the Fort Erie and Montreal gateways as well to Vancouver, BC.

Both Montreal and Toronto have extensive local transit services and both are served by large commuter rail services. Both cities operate underground rail services, Montreal is unique with rubber-tyred trains. Both CN and CP have lines going north from Toronto. CP hugs the shore of the Great Lakes, specifically Lake Superior and then west to Winnipeg, Manitoba. CN strikes out across miles of wilderness to Hornepayne and Longlac and then also west to Winnipeg. Former CO operated lines run west from North Bay and Sudbury to Sault Saint Marie, Ontario operated as the Huron Central, part of the Genesee & Wyoming railway empire. The former Algoma Central line operating north out of Sault Ste. Marie is now owned by CN. Both CP (on the former Toronto, Hamilton & Buffalo Railway) and CN also run lines through Hamilton and east to Fort Erie and then to Buffalo, New York and the United States.

Within those boundaries, the tracks which feed the mainlines are in many cases being leased or sold to other groups as short lines or being abandoned. Notable short lines are Ontario Southland operating the Guelph Junction Railway, Petro-Canada in Clarkson/Mississuaga Ontario and also on formerly CP-operated line from Ingersoll, west of Woodstock Ontario south to Tillsonburg to interchange with the St. Thomas & Eastern; Trillium Railways operating the Port Colborne Harbour and St. Thomas & Eastern lines in Ontario. Also RailAmerica has large holdings in Ontario, and Nova Scotia. As noted above the G&W group also operates in Ontario. The former Canada Southern/ CASO line from Welland to St. Thomas is now removed, the former CN Cayuga Subdivision across Southern Ontario is removed from Welland to Delhi, the remaining track to St. Thomas operated as required by the ST&E. These lines other than Goderich-Exeter/RailAmerica use older motive power predominantly ALCO/MLW locomotives. Goderich-Exeter utilizes a clean pair of blue and white FP9A units as well as older GP9 diesel locomotives in addition to GP38 and GP40 locomotives.

The monthly column varies with my views of railway news; some items which appear in the Railpace Hotnews, other news makes its own way into the column by other means. Colour slides of railway happenings in the area covered by News in Canada are always welcome and should be sent directly to editor-in-chief Tom Nemeth; as the contributing editor of News From Canada I have no direct control over the captions nor the photos which appear with the column.

Bryce Lee of Burlington, Ontario (mawnback@ispnet.ca) did the column for almost fifteen years; his last column was the March 2006 issue.

If you have any suggestions, please drop me a note.

Thank you for your continued support.

Jason Noe (jasonnoe@hotmail.com)
Contributing Editor, News From Canada
Railpace Newsmagazine

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