2600 series (Chicago 'L')

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2600 series
CTA 2842 7-17-94.jpg
Unrehabbed 2600-series cars at the Cicero-Berwyn Terminal on July 17, 1994.
In service 1981–present
Manufacturer Budd Company
Built at Red Lion Plant, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Family name High Performance
Constructed 1981–1987
Entered service 1981
Refurbishment 1998–2002
Number built 600
Number in service 565
Number scrapped 5
Formation Married pair
Fleet numbers 2601–3200
3458 (renumbered from 3032)
Capacity 45 (seated-A car)
46 (seated-B car)
Operator Chicago Transit Authority
Depot(s) 98th Street Yard
Desplaines Yard
Howard Yard
Kimball Yard (3458 only)
Rosemont Yard
Linden Yard
Line(s) served      Red Line
     Blue Line
     Brown Line (3458 only)
     Purple Line
Car body construction Stainless steel
Car length 48 feet (14.63 m)
Width 9 feet 4 inches (2.84 m)
Height 12 feet (3.66 m)
Doors 4 per car
Maximum speed 55 miles per hour (89 km/h)
Weight 54,140 pounds (24,560 kg)
Engine(s) 4 GE1262A1 per car
Power output 110 horsepower (82 kW) each motor
Electric system(s) 600 V DC third rail
Current collection method Contact shoe
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge

The 2600 series is a series of Chicago 'L' car built between 1981 and 1987 by the Budd Company of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 600 cars were built, 565 of them remain in service as of 2014.

The 2600 series was the fourth series of five interoperable series of Chicago 'L' cars known as the High Performance Family.

The 2600 series cars (numbered 2601–3200) were manufactured by the Budd Company, the same company that made the 2200 series. The cars were first delivered to the CTA in 1981, in time for the upcoming O'Hare Airport extension of the Kennedy Line (now known as the northwestern end of the Blue Line). Originally, an order was made for 300 cars, but this order was later increased to 600 cars, all of which were delivered between 1981 and 1987.

With 565 active cars, the series is by far the most abundant in the 'L' rolling stock. They were refurbished by Alstom of Hornell, New York, between 1998 and 2002. They are quite similar in design to the earlier 2400 series.

These cars make up the entire Blue Line fleet and half of the Red Line fleet, and car 3458 (originally car 3032) can be found on the Brown Line. However, the Red Line's cars have recently started to be moved over to the Purple Line to replace its 2400-series cars as the 2600-series cars on the Red Line get displaced by the new 5000-series cars. As of March 2014, these cars now make up more than half of the Purple Line fleet.

Budd/Transit America had completed car 3200 on April 3, 1987.[1] Car 3200 was not only the final car of the 2600-series order, but was the final railcar to be constructed by Budd/Transit America. Once the order was completed, Budd shut down its railcar business.


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