Railmark hasn’t met reasonable preconditions;
Earlier today, the ACR Passenger Service Stakeholders Working Group met to discuss the recent proposal made publically by Railmark Canada Ltd. regarding a limited scheduled passenger train service between Sault Ste. Marie and Hearst. As the company has still not met all reasonable preconditions, the Working Group could not support or recommend Railmark’s offer.
“Before we were prepared to recommend proceeding with Railmark, there were reasonable preconditions that the firm needed to demonstrate, such as having adequate financing. We still have no indication that these preconditions have been satisfactorily met,” said Tom Dodds, interim Chair of the Working Group. “As a result, we are not able to support the company’s proposal.”
Without a sustainable third-party operator in place, the Sault-to-Hearst passenger rail service is currently not running. However, funding from the Federal Government is still available for a viable rail operator to take over the service. As such, the Working Group, CN and Transport Canada are actively pursuing short and long-term options to resolve this situation.
These recent developments regarding the ACR passenger service have no impact on the Agawa Canyon Tour Train. CN will continue to operate the attraction daily for the entire season, which is set to end October 12, 2015. As the region’s No. 1 travel generator, the tour train takes passengers on a one-day wilderness excursion 114 miles north of Sault Ste. Marie.