Ontario Northland Welcomes Associate Minister of Transportation
Ontario Northland was proud to welcome Associate Minister of Transportation Stan Cho to Northeastern Ontario this past March. During his stay, Ontario Northland’s Chief Executive Officer, Chad Evans, and Ontario Northland’s Commission Chair, Al Spacek, were pleased to give the Associate Minister a firsthand glimpse of the work happening behind the scenes to prepare for the return of the Northlander service.
Beginning in South Porcupine, the Associate Minister was joined by Minister of Mines George Pirie and several Timmins City Councillors to view the future site of the Timmins-Porcupine Station. Currently in the design and planning phase of station construction, Ontario Northland had the opportunity to share some of the current planning efforts taking place, including work in multiple workstreams such as engineering, environmental assessments, community engagement and more. This deliberate planning and preparation is creating the foundation for the launch of a transformative transportation service.
Minister Pirie also joined the group for a tour of Kidd Mine. The tour showcased the important work taking place in Timmins in the mine, which now extends 10,200 feet below the surface. Ontario Northland is proud to play a crucial role in Glencore’s operation at Kidd Mine, assisting the company in reaching global markets through safe and efficient rail transportation.
The Cochrane maintenance facility was another highlight of Associate Minister Cho's visit. He was given an overview of Ontario Northland’s railcar maintenance and repairs facility and briefed on how Ontario Northland is preparing for expansion to service the future Northlander trainsets. As one of the key facilities for the Northlander project, Cochrane will be critical to ensuring passenger rail remains safe, reliable, and comfortable. Associate Minister Cho was able to see Ontario Northland’s commitment to maintaining the highest standards of safety.
While in Cochrane, Ontario Northland Chief Executive Officer, Chad Evans and Associate Minister Cho also met Cochrane Mayor Peter Politis and the Cochrane Tourism Association. Ontario Northland has a longstanding history in Cochrane, as the Polar Bear Express Passenger Train remains the only all-season land link between Cochrane, Moosonee and communities along the James Bay Coast. The Associate Minister toured the Polar Bear Express train, reaffirming the value of Ontario Northland’s current passenger rail service to the communities it serves.
Ontario Northland was proud to welcome the Associate Minister of Transportation to Northeastern Ontario. His visit allowed us to showcase our work in the transportation sector and provide a better understanding of the role we play in connecting communities. Our commitment to rail safety and efficiency continues to be our priority as we continue to do our part to enhance the province’s integrated transportation network. As we prepare for the launch of the Northlander service, Ontario Northland is carefully planning for a future service that is sustainable, modern and future-ready, contributing to economic development and quality-of-life for generations to come.