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Canadian Railroads > Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?


Date: 01/10/17 11:39
Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: twropr

Several years ago when VIA was cutting many of its services, which was the CANADIAN moved from the CP route (via Calgary) to the CN route thru Edmonton?
​Thanks!
​Andy



Date: 01/10/17 13:12
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: kgmontreal

CP did not want to cooperate and have VIA on their tracks in Canada.

KG



Date: 01/10/17 13:34
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: DrawingroomA

 In addition to the CPR not wanting The Canadian on their tracks - even with the reduction from daily to tri-weekly operation - the decision was political. The rumour at the time was that there were more Conservative MPs along the northern (CNR) route than on the CPR line. The other consideration, according to my MP at the time, was that the government would rather pay CN for trackage rights than CP. CN at that time was a Crown corporation - but only for four more years after the service cuts.



Date: 01/10/17 13:54
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: viatrainrider

Some time ago, there was talk of rerouting the Canadian back to the CP between Winnipeg and Toronto.  Word was EHH had even approved.  Anyone know if this is progressing towards happening?



Date: 01/10/17 14:52
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: eminence_grise

Via never disclosed what they had to pay CP for track usage , crews etcetera.  CP didn't disclose also.

"Rocky Mountaineer" also doesn't disclose the usage charges, but did say they are paying considerably less than Via was paying.

​Part of the changes implemented with the service cuts of 1990 involved the operating employees transferring from CN to Via employment.
​The CP employees affected by the service cuts were offered a sizable separation payment in exchange for giving up the rights to operate Via trains. The merging of CP and CN operating crew seniority and practices would have been very complicated. 

The political issues of the 1980's and 90's have faded somewhat.

The fact that there is a greater population base along the CP route remains, however there are more transportation alternatives with nearby highways along the CP route.

​As CP employees, we did get anecdotal information about costs charged to Via by CP.   Rather than use CP diesel fuel, Via had their own fuel delivered by truck .
​We were told that part of the yardmasters wage was paid by Via.   CP clerical staff were specifically told not to do any Via business.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/10/17 14:54 by eminence_grise.



Date: 01/10/17 14:54
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: jp1822

Thre was even talk of a Vancouver to Banff VIA train travelling locally and overnight, but it was nothing but fantasy, as Rocky Mountaineer would have NO parts of that, even if half the journey was in the dark and it served a local market. Then there was a proposal to run the other way from Winnipeg to Banff. The idea being it wouldn't interfere with any of Rocky's operations. But it too was fantasy.......



Date: 01/10/17 15:02
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: eminence_grise

Via and the Japan Travel Bureau did operate a Calgary-Banff train briefly in 1998.




Date: 01/10/17 15:16
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: rschonfelder

I've always believed that it was because of Joe Clark having the Yellowhead riding.

[For all of you millenials and all Americans; Joe was ex- Prime Minister of Canada.]

Rick



Date: 01/10/17 16:36
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: RogersPass

Hi Phil, Where was that photo taken please??
A lot of dome cars on there..

Cheers Brian in New Zealand..



Date: 01/10/17 16:58
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: railsmith

In the briefing paper that went to the federal cabinet, there were two points made in favour of the CN route:  (1) the need to provide remote service to the communities along the CN line in northern Ontario, which do not enjoy the transport services of the communities along the Trans-Canada Highway, both on Lake Superior and west of Thunder Bay; and (2) the need to transfer the Skeena’s equipment between Jasper and Vancouver for servicing.  If the Toronto-Vancouver train remaining after January 1990 had been on the CP route, the Skeena equipment would have had to be deadheaded between Jasper and Vancouver as a separate train, at a cost of four head-end crewmen in each direction, fuel expenses, and extra track access fees.
 



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/11/17 17:51 by railsmith.



Date: 01/10/17 18:16
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: railsmith

eminence_grise Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> "Rocky Mountaineer" also doesn't disclose the
> usage charges, but did say they are paying
> considerably less than Via was paying.
 
In a talk to the American Enterprise Institute on December 1, 2004, Rocky Mountaineer founder Peter Armstrong said: "I was told when I first got in that the most difficult people to deal with were going to be the two freight railways -- CP Rail and CN. We negotiated commercial arrangements. We pay approximately 10 times what VIA pays. We pay a commercial rate, and we get a great service. These are two fabulous railway companies, and their staff is dedicated to running the trains on time."

The surrounding context to that statement was Armstrong's characterization of VIA's relations with CP and CN.  Why was VIA always complaining about them, when Rocky's own experience was that the two railways provided great service?  Answering his own question, Armstrong suggested it was because VIA did not know how to establish and maintain good relations with its suppliers.

The above is the only reference to Rocky's track access rates I've ever seen that quotes any kind of number. But in October 2003,  then CP chief executive Rob Ritchie gave testimony to the House of Commons Transport Committee and stated that Rocky paid a premium rate compared to what VIA could offer. CP felt that there was room for only one passenger service among its freight traffic and therefore was not going to consider accommodating VIA on the Vancouver-Calgary route.

The Transport Minister, David Collenette, followed up with his own testimony to the committtee on October 23.  He was questioned by the Conservative MP, Jim Gouk, who was a strong supporter of Rocky and opposed the idea of VIA returning to the route and wanted to know the Liberal government's intentions. 

In reply, Collenette said: "It's a bit academic, Mr. Chairman, because CP doesn't have the capacity on the Vancouver-Calgary run. I think Mr. Ritchie was in here last week with his officials, and he probably told this to you. . . There is only one [passenger] train allowed, and that is the former VIA path, which now Rocky Mountaineer has. . .
 
"To have Mr. Gouk sleep tonight, the restoration of an exclusive [VIA] service from Calgary to Vancouver is not realistic without the expenditure of $100 million by the Treasury, and we're not going to do that."
 
This clear statement that VIA was not going to return to the route did not seem to register with Gouk, since the honourable member kept on complaining about subsidized VIA trying to compete with the privately-funded Rocky Mountaineer.
 
In exasperation, the Minister retorted: "I've said it's not on. Okay? It's not on."
 



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/10/17 18:23 by railsmith.



Date: 01/10/17 20:03
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: eminence_grise

RogersPass Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hi Phil, Where was that photo taken please??
> A lot of dome cars on there..
>
> Cheers Brian in New Zealand..

East end of Glenogle, Kicking Horse Canyon



Date: 01/11/17 02:57
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: andersonb109

Excuse me. I'm American and know who Joe Clark is as well as most other Canadian PM's in my lifetime. I find your generalization of American's to be very insulting. Now, can you name all our Presidents? 



Date: 01/11/17 04:02
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: CNStratford

But Bruce - you live in Detroit which because it is NORTH of Canada makes you almost a Canadian.  But you're right I have trouble reciting the 45 presidents or even all of our prime ministers.



Date: 01/11/17 08:04
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: tomstp

I'm in the US and Mulroney is the only one I can remember.  Why?  Not my concern.



Date: 01/11/17 08:10
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: 4489

andersonb109 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Excuse me. I'm American and know who Joe Clark is
> as well as most other Canadian PM's in my
> lifetime. I find your generalization of American's
> to be very insulting. Now, can you name all our
> Presidents? 

Ahh so just in your lifetime?  I can name US presidents before I was born along with our Canadian PM's



Date: 01/11/17 12:15
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: joemvcnj

Is the issue of a reroute back to the CP east of Winnipeg still under consideration ?



Date: 01/11/17 20:07
Re: Why was the Canadian rerouted CP to CN?
Author: RuleG

andersonb109 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Excuse me. I'm American and know who Joe Clark is
> as well as most other Canadian PM's in my
> lifetime. I find your generalization of American's
> to be very insulting.

Pot calling the kettle black.  You make all kinds of insulting generalizations about Americans.



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