FreightCar America plans to build railcars in Mexico after it ceases operations in Roanoke, a news release said.

FreightCar will close the company’s Roanoke plant by Nov. 11, ending the jobs of about 200 people, Mayor Sherman Lea was told 10 weeks ago. The Chicago company has operated for 14 years in a former Norfolk Southern facility downtown.

Earlier this month, FreightCar announced a $25 million investment to build railcars in Castanos, Mexico, starting in mid-2020. It will be a joint venture with Fabricaciones y Servicios de México, FreightCar said.

FreightCar plans to continue to operate an assembly plant in Cherokee, Alabama, its only domestic railcar production site to have survived an industry downturn. FreightCar previously idled an assembly plant in Danville, Illinois.

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Jeff Sturgeon covers business, banking, transportation and federal court. Phone: (540) 981-3251. Email: Mail: 201 W. Campbell Ave., Roanoke, VA 24011.

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