Western Canadian Short Line Railway Association

About

Who we are...

Who?    There are 26 short line railways in Western Canada; 13 in Saskatchewan, 5 each in BC and Manitoba, and 3 in Alberta. Short line railways are operated by municipalities, private business and co-ops who purchased abandoned CP and CN lines over the past 25 years. The newest short line began operation in 2016.

What?    Approximately 7% of outbound carloads originate on a short line, including agricultural products, fuel and chemicals. 

Where?  Short lines operate 24.3% of SK rail lines, and are present in 18% of urban municipalities and 26% of rural municipalities. 

How?      In 2015, short lines directly employed 183 people in Saskatchewan, loaded for over 70 small and medium sized businesses and 79 producer sites built on short lines, and had a combined expense budget of $31M.  Short lines contribute directly to local communities.

Safety?   SK short lines have not had a fatality or a dangerous goods spill in the past 10 years.  Short lines are passionately committed to the safety of our employees and our communities and follow stringent safety protocols.

Environment? In 2014, short lines in Saskatchewan transported the equivalent of 125,661 truckloads, reducing associated greenhouse gas and carbon emissions by an average of 75%.

History

The Western Canadian Short Line Railway Association, previously the Saskatchewan Short Line Railway Association, is a not-for-profit membership based organization representing the interest of 14 short line railways across Western Canada.

While present in all Western provinces, Saskatchewan has the most extensive network of short line rail.  Saskatchewan short lines own and/or operate 24% of Saskatchewan’s 8722kms of track and are present in 18% of urban municipalities and 26% of the province’s rural municipalities. The railways employ 183 residents and have a combined expense budget of over $31 million dollars.

According to the Railway Association of Canada, one in five carloads on Canadian railways originates on a short line. Short line’s provide supply chain connectivity, create employment, enable regional economic competitiveness, and reduce negative externalities associated with road transport, including emissions, road wear and tear and congestion.

 Short lines build industry capacity to promote Western Canada’s agricultural exports, servicing approximately 6000 producer cars per year and transporting resources and agricultural products from 75 businesses that are built directly on short line railways.

 
 
 

Executive

President 

Perry Pellerin, CEO Great Sandhills Railway

T 306-628-4774  C 403-464-1007                                               perrypellerin@gsrail.ca

Vice President

Position vacant.

Secretary

Aaron Wenzel, Great Sandhills Railway

T 306-628-8258 C 306-628-4774                                                     awenzel@gsrailway.net

 

Staff

 
 

Director, Communications and Government Relations

Allison Field

Allison Field is a skilled professional with over 8 years of successful communication, strategy, policy and analysis experience within the federal government, private and not-for-profit sectors. Proven skills include problem-solving, forging relationships with stakeholders, working well under pressure, and adapting to changing priorities.  

Allison has lived in Montreal, Ottawa and South Korea, studying and working in a number of fields.  In 2013, Allison returned to Saskatchewan and in 2014 she graduated from the MBA program at the Edwards School of Business. 

 

Education

MASTER of BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION (MBA)
University of Saskatchewan, 2014

B.A., History & Community, Public Affairs and Policy Studies
Concordia University, 2008