BART has made their decision in who they think should head its $2.5 billion train replacement project and shockingly it’s not coming from a US company. As the Ex reports, Canadian firm Bombardier finished with the top score from BART’s 31-month bidding process.

The lengthy process weighed eight different criteria and narrowed BART’s decision to three firms before it went with Bombardier, a company known for its work spanning the world over. But, as the Chron reports, the contentious decision has many crying foul over outsourcing.

As the Bay Citizen reports, Bombardier has agreed to build 66% of the 775 new cars needed in the US, as under federal law 60% of each train BART buys must be manufactured in America to qualify for funding. Bombardier narrowly beat French firm Alstom by producing a lower budget and a high technical score.

Though Bombardier recently came under fire for having to recall 54 trains for Chicago Transportation Authority, BART is confident. That recall came after the firm installed defective parts made by a Chinese supplier, also causing a replacement of parts on CTA’s entire order of 706 new cars.

Says BART assistant general manager Paul Oversier, “These things happen and they happen to all carmakers. Overall Bombardier has a good record.”

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the author

Always in motion. April Siese writes about music, takes photos at shows, and even helps put them on behind the scenes as a stagehand. She's written everything from hard news to beauty features, as well as fiction and poetry. She most definitely likes pie.

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  • Greg Dewar

    the whine of “Buy American” is disingenuous. There’s really no way to “buy american” when it comes to trains or streetcars because there are NO companies that make all the parts and technology needed in America to do so.

    The critics are just people who were going to get something out of the other firms, and are not being honest with people – the US abandoned rail technology ages ago, and it will never come back. The last time it tried, we had the Boeing disaster in SF and Boston. We would much rather bail out auto companies and subsidize auto travel than invest in rail. Just look at how HSR is being killed off, even though we will need it sooner rather than later.

  • Greg Dewar

    the whine of “Buy American” is disingenuous. There’s really no way to “buy american” when it comes to trains or streetcars because there are NO companies that make all the parts and technology needed in America to do so.

    The critics are just people who were going to get something out of the other firms, and are not being honest with people – the US abandoned rail technology ages ago, and it will never come back. The last time it tried, we had the Boeing disaster in SF and Boston. We would much rather bail out auto companies and subsidize auto travel than invest in rail. Just look at how HSR is being killed off, even though we will need it sooner rather than later.