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Railway Or The Highway?

At the present time, heavy freight traffic is being diverted from the railway system to the highway using 18 wheel tractor trailers. It seems that shipping companies prefer to use tax payer funded highways rather than maintain rail-beds. The result of these policies may mean the shutting down of railways and serious economic harm to future business development.

Businesses Under Threat If We Lose The Railroad

  • Over 13 rail users with over $62 million in annual sales could be forced to close down
  • Job Losses - 500 estimated combined direct, indirect and induced employment dependant on rail
  • We would lose $7.5 million in direct payroll
  • A weakened economy - $13.5 million in direct impact on economy through business operations with an additional $31.1 million in direct and indirect impact

Worst of all - the lack of rail eliminates opportunities for the creation of new businesses

How Should Freight Be Transported? Rail or Highway?
Nova Scotia spends over $200 million on highways every year.
Engineers estimate that a fully loaded truck causes more damage to a highway than 5,000 cars

  • Safety: material now carried by 500+ rail cars will be traveling by transfer trucks - the discontinuation of rail will add approximately 2,380 heavy truck onto our highways
  • Energy efficiency: on average a freight train can move 1 ton of freight about 484 miles on just one gallon of fuel. Comparable data for truck transport suggest that trucks move 1 ton of freight 155 miles on one gallon of fuel
  • Cost effective: cheaper than other modes of transportation
  • Environment Impacts: rail is the most efficient, safe and secure mode of ground transportation that moves Canadian goods

Posted in About Us

About Us

Scotia Rail Development Society was set up in April, 2015, by citizens of Cape Breton and Northern Nova Scotia when they heard that the owner of the rail line, Genesee Wyoming, were planning to abandon the Cape Breton section of the line. Their plan was to  sell or use the rails in other places.

Under the chairmanship of Dr. David Rae, dean  of the Shannon School of Business,  a strategy is being developed.  The committee includes representatives from the Chamber of Commerce, the Cape Breton Partnership,  BCA Group and a variety of business  leaders. The general public is now being invited to join the society.

A provincial committee has been set up to examine options that are available to the government. While the group heartily supports the efforts of Transport Minister Maclellan,  they feel that more initiative must come from the local community.  To better inform the public, meetings have been held in North Sydney,  Iona and Sydney. More meetings are planned.

Posted in About Us

Our Mission Is Fourfold:

  1. Explore various options for continuation of the rail service to Sydney, Cape Breton
  2. Demonstrate the vital importance regionally in order to support the continuation of the rail link to Sydney, Cape Breton
  3. Support efforts to ensure continuation of the rail link to Sydney, Cape Breton
  4. Secure in perpetuity the right of way of the line

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