November 23, 2009
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St. Louis Metro Opens Paint Facility
Representatives of Metro in St. Louis recently joined state and local elected officials to celebrate the grand opening of the public transit agency’s new $4.3 million paint facility. Located in East St. Louis, IL, the new facility will allow Metro to prepare and paint MetroLink light rail vehicles (LRVs) in an environmentally controlled area that is both healthier for employees and better for the environment.
Metro explained that many of the 87 LRVs in its fleet have been in service since the 1990s, clocking an average of 500 miles per day; as a result of their heavy use, the vehicles require fresh paint to maintain their structural integrity, extend their useful life, and keep up their appearance. While Metro has been manually repainting the LRVs at its maintenance facility in St. Louis, the new paint booth is expected to improve the process through increased technology while also minimizing the environmental impact of maintaining the trains.
“This facility will allow Metro to effectively and efficiently restore the body of the light rail vehicles, extend the service life of each train, and create a consistent image for Metro’s customers,” noted Ray Friem, Metro’s chief operating officer of transit services.
The LRVs that will be repainted at the new facility operate along the entire alignment in St. Louis City and St. Louis County, MO, and St. Clair County, IL.
Participants in dedication ceremonies for St. Louis Metro’s new paint facility include, from left: Keith MacKenzie, vice president of STV Incorporated; Dr. Richard LaBore, Metro board commissioner; Metro President and Chief Executive Officer Robert Baer; Illinois state Rep. Thomas Holbrook; U.S. Rep. Jerry Costello (D-IL); Delores Lysakowski, chairperson of the St. Clair County, IL, Transit District; Mark Kern, chairman of the St. Clair County Board; East St. Louis Mayor Alvin Parks; Scott Plocher, president of Plocher Construction; and Ray Friem, chief operating officer of Metro.