M-1 RAIL has released conceptual renderings of the facility that will house the Detroit streetcar's technology systems, vehicles and operations team.
Construction of the nearly 19,000-square-foot Penske Tech Center is already underway and is expected to be completed by the end of 2015. The facility will be located between Bethune and Custer Avenues, at the northern end of the 3.3-mile streetcar system.
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The cost to design and build the Tech Center is estimated to be $6.9 million.
“We have communicated extensively with the residents and business owners from the neighborhood where the Tech Center will be located, and their input has been invaluable in making sure that the new Tech Center becomes a vibrant part of the community,” said Paul Childs, Chief Operating Officer, M-1 RAIL.
Childs said that among the design decisions for the Tech Center, the community members’ recommendations included:
• The Tech Center building will be closer to Woodward Avenue, putting streetcar storage in a well-kept area
behind the facility.
• The exterior will be made of red brick, which is more representative of the historical look and feel of the surrounding neighborhood than other materials such as stucco or metal.
• Decorative metal fencing will be used for the perimeter of the storage area behind the facility.
• Decorative lighting will be used on the exterior of the building, and will be both functional for
safety and security, but will not disturb surrounding properties.
• The landscaping will include plants and other vegetation indicative to the neighborhood.
The Design/Build Team for the Tech Center includes Turner Construction Co., 3.L.K. Construction, ABE Associates, Inc., and RNL. ABE Associates Inc., and 3.L.K. Construction are registered Detroit‐headquartered businesses (DHB), disadvantaged-business‐enterprises (DBE) and minority business enterprises (MBE). Turner is a registered Detroit-based business. The fourth team member, RNL, is a national designer of light rail and mass transit maintenance facilities and is teamed with ABE Associates Inc. for architectural services.
Nearly 60% of the subcontractors hired by the design/build team to construct the tech center are Detroit-based, DBE, MBE and woman‐owned business enterprise companies. The goal is for 51% of the construction workers who build the facility to be Detroit residents.