Workers to make 137 rail passenger cars in Central Valley
November 8, 2017
• Will be used on Amtrak routes in California as well as in Illinois
• To be built at Siemens California plant in Sacramento
Jobs for Central Valley workers are being created through a $371 million contract to build railroad passenger cars in Sacramento.
The California Department of Transportation says Sumitomo Corporation of Americas along with Siemens will be fulfilling the multi-state contract for the new railcars, 49 pf which will be used by Caltrans and 88 by the Illinois Department of Transportation.
Building the new passenger coaches will support hundreds of skilled and high-wage manufacturing jobs in California, Caltrans says.
The cars are to be 100 percent “Buy America” from suppliers in California and across the country.
“This contract is moving full-speed ahead and that is good news for Californians, both in terms of job creation and better passenger rail service,” says Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty.
Each car will be built at the Siemens rail manufacturing hub in Sacramento. The plant, which has been in operation for more than 30 years, is also powered in part by renewable energy. The Sacramento facility features full design, engineering, and manufacturing capabilities for not only passenger coaches, but across the rolling stock industry including electric and diesel-electric locomotives, light rail, and streetcars.
Michael Cahill, president of Siemens Rolling Stock, says the new coaches “will use the industry’s latest, proven rail technology to provide passengers with a safe, modern and highly comfortable ride.”
The new railcars will be used on the intercity rail lines throughout California that serve almost 6 million passengers annually on the San Joaquin, Capitol Corridor and Pacific Surfliner Amtrak routes. The new cars will come with interiors that focus on passenger comfort and convenience, such as wi-fi, spacious seats with power outlets, large windows for all passengers, bike racks, overhead luggage storage, work tables, state-of-the-art restrooms with touchless controls and full ADA accessibility throughout the cars.
The first cars are expected to begin production within the year.