Story: Alstom Rail Car Plant

The Sponsor

Alstom Transportation is the U.S. operating unit of Alstom, S.A., a French company that develops and markets rail equipment in Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific, the Middle East, and Africa. Alstom’s products span high-speed trains, monorail, metros, and trams. It has 150,000 vehicles in service, and it produces 25 percent of U.S. public transit rail vehicles in cities such as New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago.

Alstom has three manufacturing units in Hornell, N.Y., a rural community some 55 miles south of Rochester. It is one of the largest employers in New York’s rural southern tier, operating in a region where the poverty rate tops 22 percent and families earn 68 percent of the area median income. To support economic opportunity, Alstom is a partner in broader regional efforts to train residents in advanced welding, which provides a reliable career path for people without a college education.

The Project

Broadstreet committed $6 million of LISC’s New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) allocation, with JPMorgan Chase as the investor, to build a new, energy-efficient 135,000-square-foot plant in Hornell that will expand its capacity to support stainless-steel rail car body manufacturing and meet “Made in the U.S.” requirements for the next generation of rail cars.

In addition to LISC, the $40 million NMTC package includes commitments from BlueHub Capital, Hampton Roads Ventures, Community Development Venture Capital Alliance, Rural Development Partners, and JPMorgan Chase.

Impact Statistics

  • $6M Broadstreet NMTC Allocation
  • 258 Projected Permanent Jobs Created

The Impact

The new facility is preserving 390 jobs and expected to create 258 additional jobs, all of which pay a living wage with benefits and 73 percent of which are accessible to workers without a four-year college degree. The new and retained jobs represent 7 percent of the 8,500 total population of Hornell. The NMTCs will help underpin a new $9 million employee training program as part of the project, which complements Alstom’s regional efforts to help people build their manufacturing skills.

The NMTC subsidy was vital to keeping Alstom in Hornell when management considered relocating to take advantage of urban infrastructure. Along with support from the Hornell Industrial Development Agency as well as state tax credits and federal grants, the NMTC proceeds make it economically feasible for Alstom to build the new facility in a non-metro community.