Infrastructure Resources

Major Highway Systems

Border Crossings

Rail Network

Motor Freight Service

Air Service

Sea Port Access

Major Highway Systems

  • Hwy No. 1 Trans Canada (east-west) direct connection to all major urban centres in Canada.
  • Manitoba Provincial Trunk Highway (PTH) No. 75 south to connect with U.S. Interstate network; I-29, I-94, I-90, and I-35 
  • Manitoba has a highway network that stretches thousands of miles and runs throughout the Province, connecting Manitoba to its national and international trading partners. 
  • Manitoba’s Northern communities are connected by a network of highways and winter roads, and community airports.

Border Crossings

  • Manitoba has 16 border crossings connecting the Province to the States of North Dakota and Minnesota. 
  • The Emerson-Pembina border crossing, located 110 km south of Winnipeg on PTH 75, and is the crossing of choice across the Prairie region. Although it is the busiest crossing east of Vancouver and west of the Great Lakes, and the 8th busiest crossing along the 49th parallel, it still remains uncongested with short wait times. 
  • PTH No. 59 connects Manitoba with Minnesota No. 59 at the Tolstoi Border Crossing. 
  • Over 600,000 commercial trucks cross the Manitoba-US border each year. That translates to one truck crossing roughly every minute! Close to 70% of these trucks cross at the Emerson-Pembina crossing. 
  • In 2004, Manitoba exported $7.3 billion worth of goods to the United States, and imported $8.5 billion from the United States.  80% of Manitoba’s merchandise trade with the US is shipped by truck.

Rail Network


  • Manitoba is a critical gateway in the transcontinental railway system and is home to Canada’s most modern intermodal yards. 
  • Winnipeg is the only city in Western Canada centrally located on the main line of both the CN and CP Railways. It also has three rail links to the United States. 
  • Both railway companies maintain extensive and modern rail yards that handle more than 5,000 cars per day and intermodal facilities that process more than 85,000 containers per year. (CP 35,000, CN 50,000) 
  • Roughly 3 million tonnes of commodities are shipped southbound from Manitoba into the U.S. by rail, representing a value of some $1.2 billion. 
  • Rail accounted for 17% of the total value of Manitoba exports to the US in 2003. 
  • CN has been aggressively expanding its reach south through the pursuit of strategic alliances and acquisitions. 
  • All of CN’s traffic going both East-West and North-South passes through Winnipeg.  Burlington Northern Santa Fe has terminal facilities in Winnipeg with direct connections to three-quarters of the US service into Mexico. 
  • CN and its U.S. rail division, the Grand Trunk Corporation, has some 29,000 miles of track, stretching coast to coast in Canada and the US. 
  • CN has agreements with Kansas City Southern (KCS) and Illinois Central Corp. (IC), increasing the breadth of its networks.
    -  As a result of the alliance, services have linked Manitoba and other points in Canada with U.S. Mid-West markets (Detroit, Chicago, Kansas City and St. Louis) as well as Southern markets in Texas.  The alliance has also created rail connectivity and given access to both Mexican and Canadian shippers via Mexico’s largest rail system, Grupo TFM. 
  • CP has expanded rail access to North American markets, through marketing alliances with the following partners:

-    Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR)

-     Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF)

-    Transportacion Ferroviara Mexicana (TFM)

-     Ferromex (FXE)

-    Ferrosur (FSRR)

-     Chiapas Mayab Railroad (FCCM)


Motor Freight Service

  • The primary method of transborder movement is by truck.  Manitoba’s central geographic location in North America makes it an ideal trucking centre and as a result Winnipeg is serviced by over 30 motor freight carriers. 
  • Having developed and maintained its position as a transportation centre, Winnipeg is the headquarters for eight of the top ranking inter-provincial general freight carriers, as identified by the Manitoba Trucking Association: 

-         Arnold Bros. Trans. Ltd.

-           Bison Transport Services Ltd.

-         Kleysen Transport Ltd.

-           Paul’s Hauling Ltd.

-         Purolator Courier

-           Reimer Express Lines Ltd.

-         TransX Ltd.

-           Winnipeg Motor Express Inc. 

  • Three of Canada's ten largest employers in the for-hire trucking industry are headquartered in Winnipeg. 
  • 80% of Manitoba’s merchandise trade with the US is shipped by truck. 
  • Over 600,000 commercial trucks cross the Manitoba – US border each year, or roughly 1 every minute.

Air Service


  • The Winnipeg International Airport (YWG), operated by the Winnipeg Airports Authority Inc. is the only international airport between Toronto and Calgary capable of handling large freighter aircraft.
  • YWG is competitively positioned as a 24-hour airport and serves nearly three million passengers, 140,000 aircraft movements, and handles over 140,000 metric tonnes of cargo annually (2004).
  •  Airlines / Freight Forwarders operating out of Winnipeg International Airport, as identified by the Winnipeg Airports Authority, include the following: 
Passenger Carriers:

Air Canada 

Air Canada Jazz

Air Transat

Air West Aviation 

Bearskin Airlines 

Calm Air

Fast Air 

First Air 

Keystone Air Service 

Kivalliq Air

Northway Aviation 

Northwest Airlines 

Perimeter Aviation

Skyservice Airlines 

United Express 

West Jet 

West Wind Aviation 

Zoom Airlines

Air Cargo Carriers
Air Canada Cargo Purolator
Cargojet Canada WestJet Cargo
Northwest Cargo Clam Air Cargo
Perimeter Airlines First Air
Bearskin Airlines

Freight Forwarders

Menlo Worldwide

Eagle Global Logistics

Kuehne & Nagel



BAX Global




  • In 2003, in moving 2.8 million passengers, an increase of 5% over the previous year, Winnipeg International achieved the largest gain in passenger traffic of any airport in the country.
  •  The airport has seen a steady increase in its cargo movement, with over 140 million kg in 2004 representing a 24% increase over the previous year.  In fact it has had 4 consecutive years of growth in the cargo industry which is unheard of in this in the air industry – and they are anticipating yet another growth year.
  •  Winnipeg International is has more freighter flights than any other Canadian airport – roughly 95% of cargo shipments are by freighter flights.
  •  In 2003 the Winnipeg International airport obtained transshipment designation – one of 5 Canadian airports with the designation and the only one in western Canada. Transshipment allows foreign originating freight destined for foreign destination to be off-loaded and rerouted by air, rail or truck in Winnipeg.
  • Also in 2003 the WAA invested $4.2 million in a new common use cargo apron.
  • More recently, in April 2004, the WAA announced its plans for capital investment in a terminal building renewal project for the airport.
- 2005-06 Roadways/Site works
- 2005-06 Parkade
- 2006-09 Airport Terminal Building (Phase I)
- 2007-08 Airside

Sea Port Access

  • The Port of Churchill provides Manitoba with a unique distinction among the Prairie Provinces – direct access to the sea.  Churchill can be reached by rail, air and sea.
  • Churchill is reached by land via highway 6 to Thompson, where it connects with the Hudson Bay Railway (HBR).
  • The Port is a gateway to foreign markets for grain and other agricultural exports from Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta.  For many prairie points, it is the most cost-effective and most timely way to move grain to Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.
  • CN runs the rail line from Thompson to the Pas, and the Hudson Bay Railway (HBR) runs the line on to Churchill.  The HBR, and the Port of Churchill, are owned by OmniTRAX.

  • The Port’s elevator has a capacity of 1 million tonnes of grain per year, and the capability of unloading, cleaning, grading and storing bulk grains from railcars.
  • Grain exported through Churchill goes to other Atlantic Rim ports, including Mexico and South America.
  • In 2004, 400,000 tonnes of product were exported through the port, and over 450,000 tonnes are expected to be exported this season.  In 2002, 718,000 tonnes or the equivalent of 8,000 rail cars was exported in a 3-4 month period.
  • The Port offers four deep-sea berths for loading and unloading grain, general cargo and tanker vessels.
  • In an era of concern over the security of our trading capability and terrorist threats, the Churchill gateway is a secure, competitive alternative export route to the Great-Lakes St-Lawrence Seaway system route.