CN and CSX have announced a new intermodal service offering, effective October 7, between CN’s greater Montreal & Southern Ontario areas, and the CSX-served ports of Philadelphia, New York, New Jersey and the New York City metropolitan area.

Over the long term, the freight market will increasingly depend on demand driven by the consumer economy and the rail industry must create new intermodal services that can successfully rival the over the road options,” said JJ Ruest, CN’s President and CEO. “This interline service fits perfectly with our strategic focus on feeding our unique network through organic and inorganic growth opportunities, including extending our reach into new geographic markets.” “This new intermodal offering aims to convert long-haul trucks to interline rail services,” explained Keith Reardon, Senior Vice-President, Consumer Product supply chain at CN. “Trains will run directly into the heart of the metropolitan markets of Toronto and Montreal via CN intermodal yards, making this partnership a natural opportunity for both railroads.”

Although details of the impact of the agreement are not available, it is reported that one immediate impact of it will be the closing of CSX’ terminal in Valleyfield, Quebec, at the beginning in October. The terminal has been in operation since 2015, when it was opened at a cost of $107 million. Expected to process in excess of 100,000 containers annually a few years following its opening, the terminal never met volume expectations, and actually never handled more than 100 containers per day.