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Canadian Railroads > CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB


Date: 07/22/20 13:36
CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: Marcus

Doesn't seem that long ago that CP's "Short Line" route
from Montreal to Saint John, NB withered and was sold.

Today, at CP's earnings presentation,
CEO Keith Creel was excited to describe all the great possibilities for the line.

Keith Creel, President and CEO, was asked to compare the Port of Saint John to the Port of Halifax
" if I'm going to lean on a port to tidewater, I'm going to lean on the one that's closest to market. There's a 200-mile route advantage.
You take a railroad that gets you there line of sight as a crow flies faster on our best day, the service is unparalleled. "
" These are steps that are being taken for business that's been won, business that's being planned,
infrastructure that's being invested, collaborating with the Port of Saint John,
collaborating with the province of New Brunswick, collaborating with our customers. "
" I'll be extremely disappointed if we wouldn't be celebrating a steamship line that's got a flag flying, in the Port of Saint John. "
" I'll tell you, I'd be disappointed given the things that are developing,
if we don't have automobiles that are moving from a domestic destination in the Port of Saint John.
I would tell you, I would be disappointed, if we're not moving a whole lot more forest products in LPG and fuels.
It's just across-the-board opportunity.
You're interjecting a best-in-class railway, competition and great transportation solutions that get our customers products
to the market faster and allow them to compete to win more market share. And that's a powerful recipe for success. "
" And by the end of 2022 that little $40 million railroad that we bought is going to be well north of $100 million in annual revenue in U.S. dollars at CP margins. "

John Brooks, EVP and Chief Marketing Officer
" I might add that, we're excited about the prospects of seeing manufacturing of consumer goods shift
more and more to places like Southeast Asia, and India, and South America and potentially even near-shoring opportunities.
Port of Saint John sets us up well for I think all those categories.
And let's not forget, the CMQ also gets us access into Searsport Maine, a second port over there that,
I frankly believe we haven't scratched the surface in terms of what those opportunities will look like. "



Date: 07/22/20 14:07
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: Lackawanna484

The people of Lac Megantic might be just a little concerned about unit trains of LPG rolling through town.

Posted from Android



Date: 07/22/20 15:18
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: CP8888

Looking at the Port of Searsport on Google maps can't see how a container ship could dock in the harbor.

Posted from Android



Date: 07/22/20 15:47
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: Juniata

I’m gonna go out on a limb here and predict that a decade from now, the then CEO of CP will be talking about how much money they can save by spinning the eastern line off to a regional partner.

It will be tough for CP to replicate at St. John what CN has done at Prince Rupert. In fact, I think it will be difficult for CN to replicate at Halifax what they’ve done at Prince Rupert.

Posted from iPhone



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/22/20 15:49 by Juniata.



Date: 07/22/20 19:28
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: railsmith

"You take a railroad that gets you there line of sight as a crow flies faster on our best day . . . "

I rode that line round-trip from Montreal to Saint John when VIA was still operating the Atlantic.  "Line of sight" and "as a crow flies" are two terms that definitely do not apply to this route, which is especially tortuous in eastern Maine as it twists and turns along the shores of numerous lakes.

Creel needs to take an inspection trip.



Date: 07/23/20 03:37
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: JPB

railsmith Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> "You take a railroad that gets you there line of
> sight as a crow flies faster on our best day . . .
> "
>
> I rode that line round-trip from Montreal to Saint
> John when VIA was still operating the Atlantic. 
> "Line of sight" and "as a crow flies" are two
> terms that definitely do not apply to this route,
> which is especially tortuous in eastern Maine as
> it twists and turns along the shores of numerous
> lakes.
>
> Creel needs to take an inspection trip.

FWIW, here were the fastest trip times for CPR Mtl-Saint John (481.7 miles) and CNR Mtl-Halifax (840 miles via the Intercolonial Route *) passenger train services per the June 1954 Official Guide schedules:

CPR #42 departed Montreal at 1945 (ET) and arrived Saint John at 1100 (AT): 14 hrs 15 minutes (~ 34 mph avg)
CPR #41 departed Saint John at 1630 (AT) and arrived Montreal at 0705 (ET): 15 hrs 5 minutes

CNR #4 (eb all-sleeper Ocean Ltd) departed Montreal at 2000 (ET) and arrived Halifax at 1950 (AT): 22 hrs 50 minutes (~37 mph)
CNR #3 (wb all-sleeper Ocean Ltd) departed Halifax at 0800 (AT) and arrived Montreal at 0700 (ET): 24 hrs

* I believe today's CN freight route between Montreal and Halifax uses the Pelletier Cutoff to the National Transcontinental Route which is about 75 miles (?) shorter, or 765 miles, so CP mileage advantage v. CN is perhaps 283 miles?

Per CP, intermodal trains between Montreal and Saint John will take 24 hours (20 mph avg). And per CN IM schedules, cut-off time for a Halifax-bound container is 2230 (ET) with 2nd morning availability at Halifax or approximately 30 hours (25 mph avg).

Net: ignoring sailing time differences and tidal challenges, seems like CP/Saint John will at least be competitive to CN/Halifax international IM service.



Date: 07/23/20 04:39
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: ghCBNS

JPB Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> FWIW, here were the fastest trip times for CPR
> Mtl-Saint John (481.7 miles) and CNR Mtl-Halifax
> (840 miles via the Intercolonial Route *)
> passenger train services per the June 1954
> Official Guide schedules:
>
> CPR #42 departed Montreal at 1945 (ET) and arrived
> Saint John at 1100 (AT): 14 hrs 15 minutes (~ 34
> mph avg)
> CPR #41 departed Saint John at 1630 (AT) and
> arrived Montreal at 0705 (ET): 15 hrs 5 minutes
>
> CNR #4 (eb all-sleeper Ocean Ltd) departed
> Montreal at 2000 (ET) and arrived Halifax at 1950
> (AT): 22 hrs 50 minutes (~37 mph)
> CNR #3 (wb all-sleeper Ocean Ltd) departed Halifax
> at 0800 (AT) and arrived Montreal at 0700 (ET): 24
> hrs
>

When VIA discontinued the Atlantic in Dec 1994. It took a half hour longer** on the shorter route through Saint John than the Ocean took on the longer ICR route through Campbellton.

**Probably due to US Border procedures.
 



Date: 07/23/20 07:17
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: BigSkyBlue

Checking a map, CP will not own the line from Brownville to St. John, they will have "haulage rights".  It's questionable how well they will do promising fast service on a line they do not control with lots of curves and minimal signalling.  Also,  while it may be fewer miles on the rail to St. John, is it more miles on the ship?  This could eliminate the time advantages quickly.  Prince Rupert is successful because it eliminates a day on the TPAC ship route.
All in all, it is good to see CP trying to expand their operations, instead of cutting them under the guise of PSR, but they've got some work to do.  BSB 



Date: 07/23/20 21:05
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: thehighwayman

A note to those not familiar with Eastern Canada ....

It is SAINT JOHN, New Brunswick.
ST JOHN'S, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Folks in New Brunswick are very touchy about that. I learned that the hard way when I lived there between 1985 and 1991.

 

Will MacKenzie
Dundas, ON



Date: 07/24/20 03:42
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: ghCBNS

thehighwayman Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> A note to those not familiar with Eastern Canada
> ....
>
> It is SAINT JOHN, New Brunswick.
> ST JOHN'S, Newfoundland and Labrador.
>

For anyone who's been in the Halifax Airport you have to be very careful listening to the departure announcements. You could have a couple of flights boarding simultaneously to St. John's YYT on Air Canada, WestJet or Porter.....and at an adjacent gate....a flight to Saint John YSJ!)

They usually also say Newfoundland or New Brunswick in the announcement.....but some only hear "St. John's" or "Saint John" and don't even distinguish which province they are going to!

And then there's "Sydney"......and the story of the couple from the UK a few years ago.....arriving in Halifax from Heathrow and wondering why their connecting flight to Sydney (Australia....or so they thought) was on a Dash-8!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/24/20 03:44 by ghCBNS.



Date: 07/24/20 12:55
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: BNSF6400

ghCBNS Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> And then there's "Sydney"......and the story of
> the couple from the UK a few years
> ago.....arriving in Halifax from Heathrow and
> wondering why their connecting flight to Sydney
> (Australia....or so they thought) was on a Dash-8!

Have a family friend and his wife to whom geography from a totally foreign concept.  They lived in the Midwest and booked a flight to Portland, ME instead of Portland, OR.  It wasn't a direct flight either, but one with at least two transfers.



Date: 07/25/20 09:44
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: toledopatch

I'll believe in Saint John going big-time when it starts happening. CN made a lot of noise about how much container business would grow between Eastern Canada and Chicago when it dug the new St. Clair River Tunnel almost 30 years ago, and it still only manages to field one pair of stack trains per day through that tunnel.



Date: 07/25/20 19:00
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: Lackawanna484

toledopatch Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I'll believe in Saint John going big-time when it
> starts happening. CN made a lot of noise about how
> much container business would grow between Eastern
> Canada and Chicago when it dug the new St. Clair
> River Tunnel almost 30 years ago, and it still
> only manages to field one pair of stack trains per
> day through that tunnel.

My wife and I were on a cruise which called at Saint John 15 years ago.  My recollection was a fairly compact port area, with a modest railroad yard adjacent.  I didn't see much room for expansion.

Pleasant town.  The reversing falls were nice, and the Moosehead Brewery offered a fine selection of products.  I believe the New Brunswick Southern served the brewery.



Date: 08/02/20 23:08
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: pdt

Juniata Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I’m gonna go out on a limb here and predict that
> a decade from now, the then CEO of CP will be
> talking about how much money they can save by
> spinning the eastern line off to a regional
> partner.

You're not going out on  limb... a new guy will come along to occupy the cprner office, and he'll have this great new idea....spin off the lines east of Montreal.
Its like a for sure thing.
 



Date: 08/03/20 17:39
Re: CP has big plans for its "Short Line" to Saint John, NB
Author: Lackawanna484

Will the CP continue the MM&A practice of one person train operation on the Short Line, or will it revert to the traditional two person practice?



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