Local Hotelier Speaks up About his Struggle

(Photo credit from Dean Anderson at Catalina Motel)

Over the past 12 years our business, Catalina Motel, has sought to harness the passenger train as a viable tourism opportunity through the spring, summer, fall and winter months. In the last few years that the train was operating, I was putting together as many Hearst/Hawk Junction based packages as I was selling Agawa Canyon Train Tour packages. Since the passenger train has ceased to operate, it has made it a daunting task to continue on as a year-round tourism based establishment. If we compared the last 2 winter seasons that the passenger train has not operated to the last 2 that is was operating we saw a cumulative decline in revenue from December to March by about 70%, directly related to the stoppage of the passenger train.

I appeal to people reading this blog to do what you can to support the restart of the passenger train in Algoma. I am just one of many that are affected negatively by its stoppage and ask that you contact our local politicians and ask them to help get the passenger train going again.

Dean Anderson
Catalina Motel

4 Replies to “Local Hotelier Speaks up About his Struggle”

  1. Shocking, what the loss of this service has meant to many business all along the line. The community of Sault Ste. Marie and all the other business that have lost out is huge. The tourists who used to come, the outfitters who will go under, the eco tourism businesses that cannot, for example take groups of canoeists to portage from Sand Lake or Agawa to Lake Superior and so much more. The communities north of here who counted on tourist getting off the train to spend the night or enjoy their festival’s; who counted on those snowmobiles who came by train and used their snowmobile trails and ate and socialized in SSM and Wawa and Hearst and Obama. What a loss, we all lose, the District of Algoma is our family and Sault Ste. Marie it’s hub city. Don’t give up, let’s rally, talk to the Federal MP, the Provincial MPP and our mayor.

  2. Residing in St Thomas (south of London) in south west Ontario.There are large Conservative voters in this region which as per their platform are for businesses.What I do not understand is why the NDP representatives in northern Ontario are not screaming bloody murder that RAIL is the only transportation during winter storms.We in southern Ontario never hear this plea from the NDP. Another problem with the NDP is where is their phone number in the telephone book in order to contact them.
    The 1950s Budd cars are still a logical answer with interconnected control cables and brakes when using a heavier locomotive to buck the snow.Since the Budd cars have primitive control systems.A suggestion is to locate the Budd cars without the drive systems and place 2017 style 600 volt gen sets,GMD trucks / electrical control systems and 2017 brake systems that can interconnect with standard locomotives.
    Then back to the future we have a mixed train than can on a fixed schedule deliver fuel,food,(snowmobiles)tourist,building supplies and even beer.
    It is odd that we can have an emergency repair to a highway bridge that has contracted metal supports due to cold temperatures yet trying to blame a shortline railway to produce funding from the magic hat when the Churchill MB rail line is shut down due to washouts.The government policy sold the Churchill rail line farm yet want to control magic money for repairs.

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