Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Talgo taps Milwaukee for U.S. manufacturing site

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Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle Tuesday announced that Talgo, Inc. (the U.S. subsidiary of Patentes Talgo, S.A.) will locate a U.S. “high speed” rail manufacturing and assembly facility in Milwaukee. Talgo, Inc. will acquire the former Tower Automotive site in the state’s largest city.

Doyle said the move will create 125 direct jobs in Wisconsin and about 450 indirect jobs through vendors located throughout the Midwest. “Through the Recovery Act and this facility, Wisconsin will see real economic benefits of high speed rail for generations to come. High speed rail is the future of transportation–and it is a really great thing for the state of Wisconsin to be leading the way,” the governor said in a statement.

The news follows a decision made late last week by the state of Oregon to purchase two Talgo Series VIII trainsets to augment service on Amtrak’s Cascades Corridor linking Oregon, Washington State, and Vancouver, British Columbia. Amtrak currently operates Talgo trainsets owned by Washington, but Oregon’s move strengthens the state’ s political position to be included in any expanded service on the route. Talgo, Inc. is headquartered in Seattle.

Oregon will acquire the equipment using $36.6 million in federal stimulus funds. It will also save roughly $6 million by pooling its order with an earlier purchase made by Wisconsin itself last July. 

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In a statement, Talgo, Inc. CEO and President Antonio Perez said, “We believe that the Tower site will allow us not only to deliver the trainsets on time and with our high standards of quality, but it will also allow for future growth. We appreciate the effort put forth by all the other communities that expressed interest."

“Once again, we have demonstrated that by working together, by using every appropriate economic development tool, and by selling Milwaukee’s strengths we can attract jobs to our community,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said. “I am confident our partnership with Talgo will produce benefits throughout the region.”