CN reiterates plan to upgrade Prairie North Line through Humboldt
HUMBOLDT, SK, May 13, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Today, CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI) president and chief executive officer Claude Mongeau helped the citizens of Humboldt, Sask. inaugurate the Community Trail project, part of the CN EcoConnexions - From the Ground Up program. Humboldt is one of 25 communities selected to receive funding from the program to date.
The program's objective is to promote the greening of municipal properties across Canada, especially areas in close proximity to rail lines. CN, with its partners Tree Canada and Communities in Bloom, is helping Canadian municipalities establish tree planting initiatives in a sustainable, environmentally responsible manner.
"We're pleased that the CN EcoConnexions program saw the value in this project," stated Malcolm Eaton, Mayor of the City of Humboldt. "The 5th Avenue trails development will not only give our residents and visitors the opportunity to safely access Centennial Park and the downtown, it's also a very physical reminder of our community's collective efforts to connect and beautify our city."
Humboldt's project will create a community trail that links Centennial Park - which contains the Humboldt Uniplex facility, Humboldt Collegiate Institute and Carlton Trail Regional College - with the downtown core. The project also involves the planting of trees and shrubs along the proposed trail, enhancing municipal land alongside local CN property.
In his remarks at the site, Mr. Mongeau said: "Our sustainability agenda goes beyond making our own operations as fuel efficient and environmentally friendly as possible. We aim as well to support sustainability initiatives in the communities we serve. The EcoConnexions From the Ground Up program is an excellent example of CN and communities working together to mutually promote these goals."
Mr. Mongeau also spoke of upgrades that will be made to the CN line that runs through Humboldt. CN will make significant investments in the Prairie North Line's rail infrastructure. Work will involve capital spending on new ties and rail, as well as new sidings to handle the increase in train traffic projected for the line. The investment and work plans are being developed now, with work expected to begin in earnest during the coming weeks.
"The Prairie North Line serves important resource industries in the parkland territories of the northern Prairies," said Mr. Mongeau. "Agriculture has long been the backbone of the economy here, along with forestry. Both those industries are doing well, and we're now seeing great growth in the petrochemical industry along this rail line. Traffic is growing and we're going to upgrade the line to handle the new business safely and efficiently.
"The upgrading of our Prairie North Line will improve service to our customers. It will also help the line through Humboldt become an important 'relief valve' for our more southerly main-line corridor when necessary, giving us greater overall network flexibility and resilience," Mongeau said.
"Humboldt is an important hub on CN's Prairie North Line," added Mr. Mongeau, "allowing us to crew trains and maintain critical rail infrastructure. We are proud to be here to support the greening of this town."
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