Grant funding available for closure of high-risk crossings, small-scale improvements
Canada’s Ministry of Transport is investing $21 million in funding for new projects under the Rail Safety Improvement Program – Infrastructure, Technology and Research to enhance rail safety across the country.
“Investing in rail safety is one of our commitments to keeping Canada’s communities safe. Since its inception, the Rail Safety Improvement Program has provided more than $85 million in funding to enhance rail safety. We will continue to invest in projects that keep Canadians safe, and that also contribute to the economic recovery during this challenging time,” said Omar Alghabra, minister of transport.
The program will fund 135 eligible projects across Canada, including 103 grade-crossing improvements, 18 crossing infrastructure projects, eight grade crossing closures and six technology and research projects across the country.
The projects are distributed across different provinces:
- Alberta - 5
- British Columbia - 26
- Manitoba - 3
- New Brunswick - 2
- Nova Scotia - 1
- Ontario - 36
- Quebec - 56
- Saskatchewan - 3
“As we work to increase frequency and speed of trains to reduce commuting times, and reduce automobile and transport truck traffic and the corresponding greenhouse gas emissions, it is critical we invest in rail safety,” said Lloyd Longfield, member of parliament for Guelph. “Increasing rail safety awareness and improving lighting, signals, level crossings and separating pedestrians from train traffic are critical to saving lives.”
The Rail Safety Improvement Program has two components: Infrastructure, Technology and Research, and Public Education and Awareness. In 2020, Transport Canada announced funding for four projects under the Research and Public Education and Awareness component.
Over the past four years, Transport Canada has invested more than $85 million in the form of grants and contributions to fund projects that have contributed to an overall reduction of risk, and increased safety for Canadians, it said.
In March, Transport Canada issued two new Ministerial Orders under the Railway Safety Act to further reduce the risk of uncontrolled movement of rail equipment. The previous month, it approved the changes to the Rules Respecting Key Trains and Key Routes under the Railway Safety Act.