Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will purchase 300 new rail cars to be built by the Bombardier Transit Corporation in Plattsburgh. The $600 million order will allow Bombardier to retain 300 jobs, and preserves an additional 200 jobs for area suppliers.
"The decision by MTA to award this contract to Bombardier is a major win for the people of the North Country and the entire region's economy," Governor Cuomo said. "This order for 300 new cars comes on the heels of a landmark budget agreement that ensures a fully funded MTA capital budget, allowing the agency to complete major projects and continue to provide top quality service to New Yorkers. We are one state and this shows how different regions of our state can support each other. We will continue to rebuild New York's vital infrastructure, creating jobs for hard-working New Yorkers and generating economic growth in all corners of the state."
The R-179 cars, due for testing in late 2014 and for delivery in late 2016, will replace the oldest subway cars now in use by the MTA. The cars will be financed by $306 million in federal funds already in place in the MTA's recently completed capital plan and other pending and future federal grants. The contract was approved unanimously by the MTA Board of Directors today.
The lowest bid contract will lead to the retention of 300 jobs at the Plattsburgh factory, up to another 200 jobs for area suppliers, and an estimated 110 indirect jobsthose supporting the work of the suppliers, according to Bombardier. In addition to encouraging long term employment growth, additional capital investment, and further development of Bombardier's New York-based supplier network, the contract makes possible the creation of Bombardier's new Transportation Center of Excellence in Plattsburgh. The Center of Excellence will be a new integrated manufacturing process in which the company will both manufacture and assemble the stainless steel rail car shells, which had previously been manufactured elsewhere, in Plattsburgh.
MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph Lhota said, "With this order, we are benefitting New York City Transit subway customers with an infusion of new equipment for the fleet, as well as fueling economic growth in New York State, helping to retain current jobs, creating new ones and strengthening component manufacturers and their suppliers. I commend Governor Cuomo for his support of mass transit funding and quality service, as demonstrated in the budget agreement reached this week on a fully funded capital plan for the MTA. This order is a win-win: it will improve service for the millions of transit riders in New York City, while preserving jobs for our fellow New Yorkers in the North Country."
Robert E. Furniss, Vice President for Business Development and US Sales for Bombardier Transit Corporation, said "We are proud to be continuing our long record of service to MTA New York City Transit, which began 30 years ago. We are also proud that the new R179 cars will be built in New York, by New Yorkers, providing benefits to the state's economy and to the millions of people who ride New York's subway system every day."
Bombardier first supplied equipment to the MTA and its subsidiaries in a 1981 contract. In 1994, Governor Mario M. Cuomo and Bombardier Chairman Laurent Beaudoin held a press conference at Plattsburgh City Hall to announce an agreement to establish a new Plattsburgh rail car assembly plant for Metro-North and prospective MTA projects. Since that 1994 announcement, Bombardier has twice expanded its Plattsburgh plant, moved its out-of-state operations to Plattsburgh and built 3,000 rail cars and locomotives for New York City and other transit systems.
Designed for energy efficiency, customer comfort and a high level of service reliability, the R179 subway cars will replace C Line cars that first entered service in 1964. The R179 cars will feature bright interiors, a state-of-the art climate-control system, digitized voice announcements and route signage, airbag suspension and energy-saving regenerative braking. Maintenance costs will be sharply reduced with an expected 40 percent decrease in costs over the R32s once the R179s are out of their two year warranty period. With the delivery of the new cars in 2016, the average fleet age will be 19.6 years. With no new purchase, the average fleet age would be nearly 22 years.
Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos said: "Since the 1980s, Bombardier has been a major economic driver in Clinton County and the North Country, providing hundreds of jobs for New Yorkers. The MTA's decision to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in new subway cars- to be manufactured in New York State- is a win for the riders of the subway and the residents of the North Country. I commend the Governor for focusing on job creation, as Senator Little and the Senate Republicans have done, and we look forward to continuing to work with him to rebuild the state's economy."
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said, "The MTA's decision to purchases 300 new cars, built here in New York State, is a major victory for straphangers and for the North Country's economy. Governor Cuomo and the Legislature have put job creation and rebuilding the state's economy at the center of their budget agreement, and this contract announcement reaffirms that our state is back on track. I commend the Governor and MTA for ensuring this major investment is made right here in New York where it can benefit our residents and communities."
Senator Betty Little said, "For many years, Bombardier has been a major provider of jobs here in the North Country, while supplying quality transit products across the world. We are thrilled that the MTA has once again chosen Bombardier to manufacture subway cars. I praise Governor Cuomo for leading the charge in funding the MTA capital plan and opening New York's doors to business once again, helping companies across the state have the tools they need to grow and create jobs. I couldn't be happier for the employees at Bombardier and their families. This is great news for a great workforce and a tremendous economic boost for Plattsburgh and the North Country Region."
Assemblywoman Janet Duprey said, "This announcement builds on the job creating, economy growing measures that Governor Cuomo and the Legislature agreed upon this week. By investing an additional $600 million right here in Plattsburgh, the MTA is continuing to support hundreds of jobs in the North Country and ensure our region's economy remains vibrant. I thank the Governor and Chairman Lhota for their leadership and hard work."
Bombardier's long service to the MTA includes:
- 1981 - 1990s: several contracts totaling 213 Metro North commuter line coaches
- 1982: contract for 825 R62A NYC Transit subway cars
- 1989: contract for 9 R110B new NYC Transit technology test train cars
- 1997: contract for 1,030 R142 NYC Transit subway cars
- 1999: contract for 1,172 M7 electric multiple unit commuter cars for LIRR (836) and Metro North (336)
MTA: Paul J. Fleuranges, 212 878 7037
Bombardier: Mary Anne Roberts, 215 441 1864
Governor's Press Office: 518 474 8418