Interchange - Winter 2012 - (Page 40)

CRS 2012 Highlights Rail’s Position as a Backbone of Canadian Economy The summit also served as a brainstorming session for the best and brightest minds in the Canadian rail industry to discuss timely technical and commercial issues facing operators, suppliers, customers, government and investors. In mid-October, key players in Canada’s rail sector descended upon downtown Montreal for the 2012 Canadian Rail Summit, Canada’s premier bi-annual rail conference hosted by the Railway Association of Canada. The event brought together some 300 experts and industry professionals who shared their ideas surrounding new technologies, research and development, capital investment programs and insights on accessing and building the rail business in Canada. “We had an outstanding balance of voices at this year’s conference,” said Michael Bourque, President and CEO of the RAC. “Every area of the industry was represented. We had members from passenger and freight railways, and the short line presence was excellent. It was also great to be able to have the suppliers there, since the railway-customer relationship is so important to Canada’s economy.” Bourque said CRS 2012 gave key players from across the industry a chance to liaise on a variety of subjects that will impact rail’s role in the country’s supply chain going forward, one that is increasingly important since Canada’s rail network moves more than 70 million passengers and almost three quarters of the country’s surface goods each year. “It was great to hear from industry leaders like Claude Mongeau from CN and Marc Laliberté from VIA,” said Bourque. “Their voices gave a great sense of where we are as an industry and the positive direction in which we’re headed.” Laliberté, one of the conference’s keynote speakers, spoke to a packed conference room about the initiatives that are transforming VIA, such as federal government-funded infrastructure investments, intermodality agreements and service improvements in the busy WindsorQuebec City corridor. “[The rail industry] is the backbone of Canada,” said the president of the federal Crown Corporation. “Canada was created by rail and we still carry a lot of people and goods by rail today. I don’t think the general population realizes that. So it’s more and more important that we do these sort of summits and also that we make sure the population in general is fully aware of them.” During the two-day conference, attendees took in several workshops under the theme “Building the Business of Rail,” aimed at highlighting developments and areas of opportunity in Canada’s thriving rail sector. There were also tours of Montreal’s VIA Rail Facility and the Port of Montreal, Canada’s number-one container port. The summit also served as a brainstorming session for the best and brightest minds in the Canadian rail industry to discuss timely technical and commercial issues facing operators, suppliers, customers, government and investors. In addition, the conference’s Trade Show allowed more than 30 exhibitors to showcase the latest products and initiatives improving Canada’s rail sector. Committee meetings were held behind closed doors, but question-and-answer sessions during workshops made for an interactive dialogue between rail representatives. Attendees were able to get a sense of the exciting developments that are taking place across all sectors, said Jean-Paul Rodrigue, professor in the Department of Global Studies and Geography at Hofstra University, who delivered the conference’s opening plenary. “On a yearly basis, it’s not that often that you have the opportunity to have a lot of people from the same industry under the same roof,” said Rodrigue, who gave a presentation entitled “Ten Global Trends Impacting North American Rail Freight Distribution, Revisited.” “You can talk with those folks on an individual basis most of the time, but having them all at once creates interesting and positive effects.” Rodrigue added that for a complex industry like the rail sector, trade conferences are useful 40 Interchange | Winter / Hiver 2012 http://www.naylornetwork.com/rac-nxt/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Interchange - Winter 2012

President’s Message
A Great Deal More Change Coming
New Lab will Tackle Canadian Railway Geographical Challenges
CN Adds New Terminal and Launches New Maintenance and Training Facilities
A Short Line is More than the Sum of its Tracks
VIA Transformation Paying Off
CRS 2012 Highlights Rail’s Position as a Backbone of Canadian Economy
2012 Safety Awards
Index to Advertisers

Interchange - Winter 2012

http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0113
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0412
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0312
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0212
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0112
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0411
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0311
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0211
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0111
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0410
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0310
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0210
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0110
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0409
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0309
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/RACQ0209
http://www.nxtbookMEDIA.com