July 3 saw VIA Rail Canada celebrate the 110th anniversary of its Montreal-Halifax Ocean service. In observation of this occasion, VIA Rail’s new President and CEO, Yves Desjardins-Siciliano, along with several colleagues boarded the historic train in Montreal on July 2nd at 6:55pm. Several Mayors and Members of Parliament from the twenty six communities along the Ocean’s route joined them for the journey. The voyage was concluded with a ceremony upon their arrival in Halifax which was attended by over one hundred dignitaries who helped celebrate this momentous occasion for the rail company.
“The Ocean is not only a great travel choice for discovering the beauty of Eastern Québec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, but it is also a part of our heritage,” declared Mr. Desjardins-Siciliano. “For 110 years this train route has been an important connection between many communities. For the population, it is a treasure, and we are proud to continue this tradition now and for years to come.”
“We feel a strong attachment to and place great importance on VIA Rail's Ocean train service, and our actions in recent months to maintain the railway line in eastern New Brunswick demonstrate that commitment,” said the president of the Association francophone des municipalités du Nouveau-Brunswick and Mayor of Richibucto, Mr. Roger Doiron. “The news about the $10.2 Million investment in the infrastructure was received with joy. We are aware, however, that a lot of work remains to be done to ensure the long term success of the service and attract more passengers.