Canadian Pacific Railway Launches Rail Transport Service Between Detroit, Vancouver


Canadian Pacific Railway Limited (CP) today announced the launch of a new direct rail transportation service for goods between Vancouver and Detroit seven day a week. The rail transportation service will extend CP’s reach and access to key markets for shippers, and cut transit times form the West Coast to Detroit by as much as 48 hours.

“We’ve worked hard to reshape our footprint in the Vancouver area to improve efficiency and boost capacity for our customers,” says John Brooks, CP’s senior vice president and chief marketing officer. “And now, with our live-lift operation in Portal, N.D., we can expedite service and truly exploit the strengths of our network to provide unparalleled service and value in the Vancouver-to-Detroit line.”

The new Vancouver transload operation’s location is co-located at CP’s carload and intermodal facility, allowing the company to utilize the rail for movements between terminals and ports, where others must rely on trucks, reducing traffic congestion in the Vancouver area and lowering costs.

From Detroit, CP now serves both the Port of Montreal and Port of Vancouver daily in and out of its company controlled terminal. The daily service complements CP’s terminal fluidity and capacity with more than 17 acres to support their customers growth, including the empty annex adjacent to the Detroit terminal near the convergence of the Southfield Freeway and I-96.

“CP recognizes our customers’ need to get their goods to the key markets of the U.S. as efficiently as possible,” says Hardy Pearson, senior vice president for the Midwest and Northeast for Hapag-Lloyd. “Simply put, shorter transit times, a more fluid border crossing, and near seamless movement through Chicago means not only lower costs but better, more consistent access to the right markets.”

CP successfully started live lift operations at the Portal border crossing in the second quarter of 2017. The new service allows CP to lift single containers off of trains for inspection by customs authorities, rather than holding up entire intermodal railcars, which can hold up to 15 containers. This eliminates delays to containers not flagged for inspection, making it easier and faster for customers to do cross-border business.

A video of the portal live-lift in action can be seen here.