Bombardier Transportation is opening a new railcar assembly operation in Pittsburg, Calif., principally to produce the “Fleet of the Future” railcars for the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART). The Montréal-based manufacturer said the new site will strengthen its U.S. presence and commitment to the U.S. market, and will help it continue to meet "Buy America" requirements.
Bombardier did not detail the value of its new investment at Pittsburg, a manufacturing center east of San Francisco. It said the new assembly center would become operational in the coming months.
Since in 2012, BART has issued contracts worth approximately $1.5 billion to Bombardier for a total of 775 new transit railcars.
The “Fleet of the Future” railcars have a reconfigured interior layout to maximize seating and comfort, with more priority seating for seniors and disabled people; wheelchair access; and bicycle racks in every car. The cars also have interior and exterior digital displays showing passenger information; a better public address system; more doors to make boarding faster and easier; energy-saving lighting; and energy-efficient propulsion and regenerative braking.
Bombardier has been assembling the cars at its manufacturing plant in Plattsburgh, N.Y. The work will be transferred to the new operation in Pittsburg over the coming months, freeing space at Plattsburgh for new East Coast orders.
Bombardier currently has nearly 500 employees in California, working on programs for BART, the AirTrain system at San Francisco International Airport, the Metrolink service at the Southern California Regional Rail Authority, and the Coaster and Sprinter rail services for the North County Transit District.