Manitoba announces development partner for CentrePort Canada Rail Park

A national real estate developer is entering into an agreement with North America’s largest trimodal inland port to develop a rail-served industrial project, the provincial government announced Friday.

Focus Equities Inc. will build the CentrePort Canada Rail Park, which is expected to provide a critical stimulus for significant economic growth, trade, business attraction and investment, job creation and increased tax revenues for Manitoba.

The project supports Manitoba’s vision to make the province both a national and international gateway of trade, Premier Heather Stefanson said in a news release.

Construction set to begin in the coming months, with the project’s impact having the potential to exceed $3 billion, according to a news release. More than 4,800 jobs are expected to be created.

The 665-acre rail park is to be located within CentrePort Canada, a 20,000-acred inland port in the Rural Municipality of Rosser, which is within Winnipeg’s capital region.

The park will offer globally-connected businesses with large-volume shipping needs, and the ability to access, transfer and transport goods between road and rail, with close access to James Armstrong Richardson International Airport in Winnipeg, the release said.

Amid the current global supply-chain issues, there has never been greater demand across the continent for a centralized logistics and shipping location for rail, truck and air than now, Focus Equities owner Ken Mariash stated in the release.

He added that his company has already started to engage in negotiations with global brands that are interested in choosing the new rail park at CentrePort for their transportation infrastructure needs.

CentrePort issued a request for proposal in 2018 to attract a private developer for the project.

Significant opportunities exist for CentrePort to continue to grow and offer solutions to companies that manage part of their supply chain by rail, president and CEO Diane Gray said in the release.

The rail park project will utilize the advantages of Manitoba’s central North American geographic location and plays a critical role in enhancing and growing Manitoba’s trade and investment profile domestically, within the continent and around the globe.

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