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A well loaded CP "Expressway" train rolls past Coakley siding just east of Woodstock on a beautiful day back on May 4, 2004.  This is one of only a few of the Expressway trains that I was able to shoot, and by far the most loaded train I saw bound for Detroit.  Sadly the service was not efficient enough to last and now all those trucks, and 100's more like it that could have used this service, are on our roads daily....
Copyright Notice: This image ©Geoff Elliott all rights reserved.



Caption: A well loaded CP "Expressway" train rolls past Coakley siding just east of Woodstock on a beautiful day back on May 4, 2004. This is one of only a few of the Expressway trains that I was able to shoot, and by far the most loaded train I saw bound for Detroit. Sadly the service was not efficient enough to last and now all those trucks, and 100's more like it that could have used this service, are on our roads daily....

Photographer:
Geoff Elliott [648] (more) (contact)
Date: 05/04/2004 (search)
Railway: Canadian Pacific (search)
Reporting Marks: CP 6044 (search)
Train Symbol: CP Train #123 (search)
Subdivision/SNS: CP Galt Subdivision (search)
City/Town: Woodstock (search)
Province: Ontario (search)
Share Link: http://www.railpictures.ca/?attachment_id=39942
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Photo ID: 38739

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8 Comments
  1. Tx. Hard to compete profitability at those prices

  2. Sorry Stephen..I was talking over the road; Chicago to Toronto 700 + or so, Chicago to Montreal was about $ 1000

  3. For the expressway? Sheesh

  4. Stephen..when I was auditing freight rates many years ago…a full truckload rate Toronto/Montreal was about $ 500.00 give or take a bit

  5. The economics of the Expressway didn’t make sense to me though. To compete with trucks, I figure CP got about $1000 per trailer, or $2000 per loaded train car (Toronto-MTL). And if fully utilized (paid for) you get the revenue both ways which helps.

    BUT you pay people to load, unload (at all sites) and special clerical staff to handle all the paperwork, plus the unpaid spots..

    THEN factor in the cars were probably needing major work or replacement.. spelled the end of it all IMHO.

    Now the Expressway yard in Milton is used to transload liquids, there are no on-site CP staff, existing trains and clerical staff handle paperwork and CANDO operates it all (Trackmobile?) – CP is probably making more profit off the dozen or two cars weekly switched in and out of there than the entire Expressway service did annually since they undoubtedly get a much longer haul and a higher tarriff.

    I could be very wrong but it seemed like a highly marginal business after costs are factored in. A great idea but needed much longer haul hence higher revenue to compete. But it was great while it lasted.

    I wish I shot more runs in ’04 before it ended on the west end – only got a couple. Thanks for sharing.

  6. It was usually about 1/4 of that. The possibilities of TOFC remain endless…except for the railroads desire to run at 35mph and 12000 feet.

  7. Tell me about it. Working at the Bridge in Windsor is scary. 1 truck inbound averaging every 60 seconds per lane (13 lanes)….. You do the math.

  8. But Geoff this is nothing by comparison to what’s on the highways now

    Toronto trucks their garbage to the Green Lane landfill near St. Thomas / London, one drive to Sarnia I counted about 30 garbage trucks going the other way in a 50 minute drive on the 401 – that’s about 80 trucks both ways per hour, how many hours per day?

    I’d love to see it all go by train but the expressway would have to be once an hour to make a dent in what’s on the highways.

    It’s crazy really – what the railways could get…

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