Friday, July 17, 2009

Wisconsin purchases two Talgo train sets

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The state of Wisconsin will purchase two 14-car train sets from Las Rozas, Spain-based Patentes Talgo SA to replace current equipment used in Amtrak’s Hiawatha Service between Milwaukee and Chicago. The agreement includes an option to buy two more trains if the state gets federal stimulus money to extend rail service from Milwaukee to Madison, the state capital.

Talgo will perform final assembly of the car order at facilities yet to be determined in Wisconsin, generating up to 80 jobs, said Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle Friday. Each train set has a capacity of 420 passengers.

"Today we are embarking on a new era of passenger rail service that creates high-skilled jobs, spurs economic growth, and makes travel safe and comfortable,” Doyle said. The governor made his announcement at Dane County Regional Airport in Madison, touting the deal as the Badger State’s first step toward implementing high speed rail.

Amtrak currently operates Talgo equipment on its Cascades Service in the Pacific Northwest; Talgo subsidiary Talgo, Inc., is based in Seattle.