McDowell Engineers and Associates oversees NCDOT's railcar refurbishment program. We have created design standards and specifications for railcar shops to follow as guidelines. NCDOT purchases heritage railcars (1950's and 1960's) and refurbishes them to like new condition. We have proven this to save taxpayers 50% compared to new car costs. Heritage cars are stripped down to structure, receive repairs, and are outfitted with modern interiors. All renovations comply with federal regulations relating to wheelchair compliance, smoke and flame compliance, 8g loading compliance, and lighting level requirements.