TOPEKA (KSNT) – The Shawnee County Commission approved the purchase of a new train for Gage Park Monday morning.
Chance Rides Manufacturing will build the new electric train with delivery by 2023. Chance was the only bidder on the project.
Chance Rides Manufacturing is the Wichita company that built the Iron Horse that is currently at Gage Park. The new Electric C.P. Huntington train will run on lithium-ion batteries.
Fleet Services Superintendent Brent Hulsether told the commission that Topeka would see fuel savings, fewer repairs, design improvements including wider and more comfortable seating, as well as fewer maintenance costs. Hulsether said one of the new coaches would be ADA accessible.
The Shawnee County Commission approved the request by the Parks and Recreation Department to start looking for bids to purchase the new train on February 21 after concerns about the train breaking down on a regular basis.
Repairs for the old train were becoming more expensive and parts were more difficult to find.
The money for the train, expected to be around $600,000 to $700,000, will come from the American Rescue Act.