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Canadian National completes TransX acquisition, details capital projects in western Canada

Source: Canadian National Railway

Canadian National (CN) finalized its acquisition of trucking and transportation provider TransX, months after announcing plans to purchase the company.

The railway didn’t disclose costs, but it said TransX would continue to operate independently and keep open its main office in Winnipeg.

CN first announced plans to acquire TransX in October 2018. TransX is one of Canada’s largest and oldest carriers, specializing in trucking, less-than-truckload, intermodal, warehousing and freight forwarding. It has 1,500 trucks, 4,000 trailers and 1,000 intermodal containers, with operations at 12 terminals in the U.S. and Canada.

CN said the acquisition is part of a broader effort to expand capacity and offer additional supply chain options, particularly for refrigerated goods. The acquisition of TransX adds to CN’s Cargo Cool refrigerated transport service, which already serves 23 intermodal terminals throughout the West, mid-continent and U.S. Gulf Coast.

The acquisition will “deepen” the company’s supply chain focus and provide customers with services from the first mile to last mile, CN president Jean-Jacques Ruest said on March 22.

Friday’s announcement on TransX capped a series of announcements by CN last week on how it expects to spend a planned C$3.9 billion in capital investments this year. (A Canadian dollar currently is valued at US$0.75.) CN has been seeking to expand capacity in western Canada in part because of the rail service issues that plagued the company during record grain harvests and the bad winter weather conditions of 2017-2018.

In Saskatchewan Province, the railway will spend about C$245 million to construct 35 miles of double tracking and conduct maintenance projects such as replacing track, installing new railroad ties and rebuilding road crossings.

In British Columbia, CN will invest about C$345 million for maintenance efforts and capital projects such as constructing a new train passing siding in Port Edward, constructing 2.5 miles of double track west of Prince George and working with the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority and the Canadian government to expand rail capacity at the Port of Vancouver.

And in Alberta, CN expects to spend about C$370 million on maintenance projects and capital projects such as constructing 24 miles of double track and building new tracks at Scotford Yard near Edmonton to increase yard capacity.

Joanna Marsh

Joanna is a Washington, DC-based writer covering the freight railroad industry. She has worked for Argus Media as a contributing reporter for Argus Rail Business and as a market reporter for Argus Coal Daily.