The Town of Cochrane is embarking on a $1.4-million multimodal transportation project that will make it a hub for industry transportation services in the North.
Initially, the Cochrane Intermodal Terminal, currently being constructed at the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission (ONTC) yard in Cochrane, will provide hauling services to Detour Gold, but future plans have the town tapping into forestry and agriculture as well.
J.P. Ouellette, CAO of the Town of Cochrane, said the benefits for the town are innumerable. “It’s helpful for local industry, it supports the ONTC and rail jobs, it’s a better end use for transportation, reducing greenhouse gases, and it’s less traffic for our roads,” he said. “So, it’s win-win all around, and we’re quite pleased and excited about the whole idea and the opportunity.”
The concept for a multimodal transportation hub originated a few years ago with Detour Gold while the company was constructing its Detour Lake gold mine.
“They had identified a plan and a need to create a multimodal yard at the ONTC yard here, because they anticipated a lot of their supplies to keep the mine operational would be coming in by rail,” Ouellette said. “And so they had drafted a conceptual layout.”
The idea was scrapped when the plan was found to be too expensive, but it remained in the back of Ouellette’s mind.
“It got shelved, but it didn’t do away with the need, because the need was always there,” Ouellette said. “So we kept talking with (Detour Gold) about what was the low-hanging fruit and what might be useful to their operations.”
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