Inside Logistics

Alaska – Alberta Railway begins surveying route

Team will now begin a three-month planned process of field investigation and  topographic modeling


July 10, 2020
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EDMONTON – The Alaska – Alberta Railway Corporation (A2A Rail) has commissioned engineering firm HDR to begin detailed land surveying along the Alberta segment of the railway’s proposed route to Alaska.

HDR will work with local contractors and subcontractors, including Quantum Spatial, and Lawson, a certified Indigenous owned and controlled surveying firm. Having secured funding for this critical pre-construction activity, A2A Rail and its technical team will now begin a three-month planned process of field investigation and  topographic modeling.

The survey process is part of an accelerated development effort that will allow A2A Rail to engage in early field activities (such as land clearing, fencing and access road preparation) in Alberta within the next three to six months.

“A2A Rail continues to gather momentum. The start of surveying activities means that we are now officially ‘boots on the ground’ here in Alberta,” A2A Rail founder and chairman Sean McCoshen.

“Combining that with our progress on completing our feasibility study, it is safe to say that A2A Rail has advanced well beyond the early idea first investigated by the Van Horne Institute, into a mature infrastructure project only months away from breaking ground.”

The A2A railway was conceived to transport a wide range of bulk commodities including oil, grain and ore in addition to containerized goods. The proposed 2,570-kilometre route will connect the North American railway network via Northern Alberta to the existing Alaska Railroad network and Alaska’s deep-water ports.

The project is expected to generate more than 18,000 jobs for Canadian workers.

“We estimate that A2A Rail could unlock $60 billion CAD in additional cumulative GDP through 2040 and lift household incomes by an average of 40 percent,” McCoshen said.

Next steps include environmental impact assessments that are necessary in both countries to determine the most sustainable way to build and operate the railroad.

Alaska – Alberta Rail is a privately owned corporation. Based in Calgary, Alberta, A2A also has offices in Vancouver, British Columbia, Washington, D.C., and Anchorage, Alaska.