Released on June 8, 2023
Short line railway companies are on track to receive grants from the Government of Saskatchewan through its Short Line Railway Improvement Program (SRIP).
The $530,000 in funding will assist with track upgrades and expansion, improved crossing surfaces and sightlines, bridge maintenance, track rehabilitations and more.
"The short line rail industry plays a pivotal role in bolstering our economy by efficiently transporting agricultural goods and a multitude of other products across our growing province," Highways Minister Jeremy Cockrill said. "Our commitment to this program ensures ongoing provision of grants to short lines, empowering them to enhance their tracks through upgrades and expansion projects."
Grants are determined based on how much track each short line owns. Small networks with less than 80 kilometres of track receive at least $25,000. The larger networks receive a proportional amount based on how much track they operate.
Funding allocations for 2023-24:
- Thunder Rail $25,000
- Torch River Rail $25,000
- Northern Lights Rail $25,000
- Southern Rails Cooperative $25,000
- Long Creek Railroad $25,000
- Wheatland Rail $25,000
- Red Coat Road & Rail $25,000
- Stewart Southern Railway $28,297
- Last Mountain Railway $29,155
- Carlton Trail Railway $37,515
- Great Sandhills Railway $43,089
- Big Sky Rail $87,035
- Great Western Railway $129,909
"The SRIP grants go to support more efficient operations for Saskatchewan short line rail," Western Canadian Short Line Railway Association Director of Communication and Government Relations Rachel Mackenzie said. "Improving infrastructure ensures safe and efficient rail service for our members in Saskatchewan which is critical to support exporters of agricultural and other commodities."
Provincial grants provide up to 50 per cent of eligible project costs. The funding is used by rail lines for a variety of projects including expansion of rail yards, improved crossing surfaces, bridge maintenance, track rehabilitation and track materials.
There are 13 provincially regulated short line railways in Saskatchewan that operate on 2,123 kilometres of track, primarily transporting grain.
For more information, contact:Steve Shaheen