L.A. County decision means more work for Talgo in Milwaukee

Option exercised for additional 36 rail cars

Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority trains to be overhauled by Talgo in Milwaukee.

Spanish train maker Talgo Inc. will have additional work to bring to Milwaukee after the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority approved the overhaul of an additional 36 rail vehicles.

Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority trains to be overhauled by Talgo in Milwaukee.

Talgo announced last year it would bring the work on a $73 million contract with L.A. County to Milwaukee. The contract called for Talgo to overhaul 38 rail vehicles by replacing internal systems, including propulsion, braking, communication and automatic train controls.

The transportation authority had the option to have Talgo provide the same services on another 36 cars and exercised the option last week.

The decision helps secure the future of Talgo’s work in Milwaukee over the next several years after having left when its contract to build trains for a high-speed rail line from Milwaukee to Madison was cancelled by the state.

The company and city of Milwaukee agreed to a new lease for space at the Century City building at 3533 N. 27th St. The lease started this month and runs for four years with the company paying around $350,000 for the space.

When the company first resumed work at Century City over the summer, executive and city leaders said moving into train maintenance was a new line of work for the company and expressed optimism that the Los Angeles County contract could lead to more work in the future.

“They’ve got a lot riding on this,” Department of City Development commissioner Rocky Marcoux said at the time. “This is a big bet for Madrid to enlarge their business. If this contract doesn’t go well, they’re not going to get any more.”

Antonio Perez, chief executive officer of Talgo’s U.s. subsidiary, said the decision by Los Angeles County would allow Talgo to expand its production base. The company is currently in the engineering phase and will start production in April.

“Talgo’s team is working diligently and in close coordination with Metro to ensure that we meet their expectations and increase the safety, availability and reliability of Metro’s’s Red Line Fleet” said Ferran Canals, Talgo project manager.

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Arthur covers banking and finance and the economy at BizTimes while also leading special projects as an associate editor. He also spent five years covering manufacturing at BizTimes. He previously was managing editor at The Waukesha Freeman. He is a graduate of Carroll University and did graduate coursework at Marquette. A native of southeastern Wisconsin, he is also a nationally certified gymnastics judge and enjoys golf on the weekends.

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