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Rail project's Tech Center aims to fit surroundings

Associated Press

A conceptual rendering shows the Penske Tech Center facility, where the M-1 Rail’s technology systems, vehicles and operations team will be based.


— Officials with Detroit's light rail project-in-progress say its Tech Center incorporates ideas from community members and should be completed by the end of the year.

M-1 Rail released renderings Sunday of the Penske Tech Center. That's the roughly 20,000-square-foot building where the streetcar's technology systems, vehicles and operations will be based.

The M-1 Rail’s Tech Center will be located between Bethune and Custer avenues, at the northern end of the 3.3-mile streetcar system. Construction is already underway.

Officials say recommendations being used include putting the building closer to Woodward Avenue, and featuring a red-brick exterior that evokes the historical look of the neighborhood. It also will have decorative lighting and metal fencing around the storage area.

The center is named for Detroit businessman Roger Penske, a major donor to the rail project.

The rail line is to start running in 2016. It will extend from Detroit's downtown riverfront to the New Center area.

Streetcars will be stored behind the Tech Center. Decorative metal fencing, exterior lighting and landscaping are part of the design.