Initiatives in the field

Rail-road intermodality


In a radius of 25 km surrounding Edmonton, the quality of aggregates is medioce, they are hard to access and their deposits are limited. The market for aggregates suffers as a result of this. The price increased from CAN$15 / tonne in 2003 to CAN$24 in 2007. For Works Alberta and its subsidiaries, there is a lot at stake, given the need for 1.5 million tonnes/year in Edmonton. A decision was therefore made to define a long-term solution:

  • a site with over 1,000 hectares was identified 300 km to the west of Edmonton,
  • the deposit is better quality than near Edmonton,
  • reserves are estimated at 50 million tonnes,
  • the site is next to an unused railway line, 
  • the cost price would be competitive compared to the Edmonton market price.

This kind of rail-routing solution is unprecedented in Canada.

  • 2003-2006: administrative procedures lasting 4 years and competition attempts to block the project 
  • 2008: operations begin
  • 2009: rail equipment is completed and the line is repairedToday, Works Alberta uses 200 railcars and will soon use 60 more for bitumen. At Colas, rail and roads complement each other perfectly!
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