Bombardier Transportation has secured two contracts worth $108m for the delivery of 28 Bombardier BiLevel commuter rail cars. The trains will be delivered to two US West Coast transportation authorities and the procurement was led by Sound Transit in Seattle, Washington.
According to the contracts, Bombardier will supply a combination of eight cab cars and 20 coaches, with an additional option for 33 additional rail cars.
Bombardier’s Thunder Bay manufacturing site in Canada will build the cars, the deliveries of which are expected to commence in the fourth quarter of next year.
Bombardier Transportation America Region president Elliot G (Lee) Sander said: “We are very happy to serve our valued, long-term commuter rail car customers as they expand and improve their fleets to meet ridership needs and enhance the passenger experience.
“These new orders are a demonstration of continued confidence in the BiLevel commuter rail car, a service-proven transit solution that delivers unparalleled reliability.”
The BiLevel car was introduced in 1978 and is said to be one of the ‘most popular double-deck commuter rail car in North America’. BiLevel cars have been recently adapted to meet the changing demands and were upgraded with a Crash Energy Management system and full-width cab.
Other upgrades included the door and air-conditioning systems, as well as enhancements to passenger amenities. The cars have a more aerodynamic cab car and new lighting that is expected to decrease fuel consumption and boost energy efficiency.
In July 2019, Bombardier planned to lay off up to 50% of the workforce at its Thunder Bay plant.
Bombardier has been downsizing its aerospace and railway operation for several years as part of efforts to improve profitability.