CN plans $1.7 billion capital spending

by Array

MONTREAL: CN will invest $1.7 billion in 2011 targeting infrastructure, equipment and technology.

“Our service innovations include first-mile-last-mile initiatives that respond to customer needs at origin and destination, and supply chain collaboration that emphasizes an end-to-end view of service quality,” said Claude Mongeau, CN’s president and CEO. “In the last five years, CN spent almost C$8 billion on capital improvements. Such investments serve to build a quality network that, in turn, supports economic growth across Canada and the United States.”

About $1 billion of CN’s 2011 capital investment program will target track infrastructure, CN said. This includes replacing rail, ties and other track materials. The spending will also include bridge improvements and rail-line improvements on the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway Company (EJ&E) that CN acquired in 2009.

CN’s infrastructure spending also includes strategic initiatives across the system and additional network improvements in Western and Eastern Canada.

The company said equipment spending will improve fleet quality. It includes buying new, fuel-efficient locomotives and new freight cars, and will reach approximately $200 million in 2011.

CN also expects to spend approximately $500 million on facilities, including transloads and distribution centers to serve off-line customers; new information technology to support operational and service excellence and other projects.