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State grant ensures Kawasaki will keep rail car plant in Yonkers

YONKERS – The state committed $500,000 a few weeks ago for Kawasaki Rail Car to use toward the $25 million purchase of its Yonkers facility and state and local officials celebrated the purchase on Tuesday.

Since Kawasaki began operations in Yonkers in 1987, it has manufactured over 2,700 train cars for mass transit including for New York City, PATH, Metro-North, Long Island Rail Road, and for systems in Boston, Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC.

State Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins, who noted the plant employs just under 400 people, said it is one of the largest private sector employers in the city.

“I think it’s a great, great story for what can be done when we work together in a singular focus of growing the economy, not only attracting new businesses but retaining the businesses that we have and of course, we expect every employer to be responsible in terms of meeting the goals and objectives before we give the hard working taxpayer money to these various enterprises,” Cousins said.

Mayor Michael Spano called Kawasaki “the cornerstone of the economic growth and vitality of downtown Yonkers.”

In October 2010, the company considered moving from New York to its other facility in Nebraska, but with the financial assistance of New York State, decided to state put.