Our Story

Weve provided outstanding service to the passenger rail industry for 80 years.

Passenger rail is our sole focus. LTK provides highly-specialized technical and management expertise to meet our clients toughest rail vehicle and rail systems engineering challenges.

Founded as a one-person electrical engineering firm in 1921 by Louis Tobias Klauder, LTK is North Americas largest consultant dedicated exclusively to the passenger rail industry.

Our extensive project portfolio and deep resources make us the industry leader.

No other consultant can match LTKs laser focus on the passenger rail industry. None can match our overall experience, depth of talent, and ability to meet clients expectations.

LTKs comprehensive experience covers every type of passenger rail system, at every phase of project development.

LTKs market leadership is founded on the industrys largest portfolio of specialized rail project experience. Whether its rail cars, signals, traction power supply and distribution, fare collection or simulating all rail operations, we provide clients with practical, efficient, economical solutions incorporating the best of both existing and state-of-the-art technologies.

Building upon the firms electrical engineering expertise, LTK undertook our first rail project in 1935 to support construction of the Bridge Line between Philadelphia and Camden, NJ. We served as the Owners Representative to provide engineering oversight, support for the manufacture of 26 subway cars and the construction of power, signal and communication systems. This highly successful project was the predecessor to the PATCO High Speed Line and pointed LTK in a new direction.

In 1966, LTK helped the Long Island Rail Road radically update the concept of the railroad electric multiple unit (EMU) car. The resulting Metropolitan M-1 car moved the LIRR from reliance on 1920s technologies to a world of 100 mph performance, modern and efficient layout, provision for level boarding at all stations, comfortable contoured seats, automatic couplers, and standardized consists made up of married pairs. The M-1 was followed by numerous procurements of additional Metropolitan cars for LIRR and Metro-North, with each new Metropolitan car class incorporating then-current innovations in rail car design. LTK has supported the New York MTA railroads in every one of these procurements, spanning over 50 years and a total of 3,341 cars.

Opened in 1969, the PATCO High Speed Line expanded the Bridge Line into the heart of Southern New Jersey and updated its technology. LTK provided comprehensive design and engineering services for rail vehicles and fare collection, and helped to staff and manage the new operation in its infancy. This ground-breaking new system introduced many rail transit innovations to North America 75 mph top speed with automatic train operation; self-service fare collection and speeds competitive with automobiles. In the face of funding limitations, LTKs practical approach to the lines operation and design features resulted in an efficient system that operated on a near break-even basis for decades.

In 1980, TriMet selected LTK to provide comprehensive engineering support in the design and construction of the Banfield Light Rail Transit (LRT) project in Portland, OR. This was TriMets first foray into light rail, and it led to the establishment of LTKs first office outside of the Philadelphia area. Responsible for vehicle and systems engineering, we paired robust engineering concepts with a keen appreciation for LRTs aesthetic footprint to produce practical, efficient designs for all aspects of the LRT system. The Banfield received the NW Regional Project of The Year Award for 1986 from the American Society of Civil Engineers. Based on our success with the Banfield Project, LTK has served as TriMets systems engineering consultant for every subsequent expansion of the Portland-area LRT network.

Faced with the need to replace thousands of aging subway cars, New York City Transit (NYCT) turned to LTK in 1995 to provide comprehensive technical and management services to support New Millennium car procurement programs. Over five procurement programs, encompassing three different car types, LTK has helped NYCT incorporate major upgrades in on-board technologies, combining highly-efficient propulsion, electrical and braking systems with state-of-the-art passenger information and maintenance diagnostics systems. Our wide-ranging efforts included conceptual engineering, design oversight, inspection services, test witnessing, commissioning, and training and troubleshooting support. Over the past two decades, we have helped NYCT successfully procure 3,504 cars by far the largest rail car procurements in the U.S. and our work continues with todays R179 and R188 car programs.

In 2009, Denvers Regional Transportation District (RTD) embarked on the first mainline railroad electrification in decades. LTKs analysis demonstrated the long-term economic and environmental benefits of a 25 kV/60 Hz electrified commuter rail system, which could be achieved as part of RTDs FasTracks regional transit expansion program. We then developed conceptual designs for both the traction power system and the overhead catenary system, and later provided comprehensive engineering oversight and test witnessing services during system construction and commissioning.

LTK provides specialized expertise in every area of rail car and rail systems technology.

LTK employs the industrys largest and most capable staff of rail vehicle and systems engineering experts. Our wide-ranging expertise helps clients address difficult technical challenges quickly and with confidence.

LTK consistently earns our clients trust through successful project delivery.

We work hard every day to earn and maintain the respect and trust of our clients and employees. Our relationships are grounded in honesty, accountability and efficiency, and are often long-term. Our clients recognize our commitment to excellence and the outstanding results we achieve on their behalf, and they return to us with their most difficult problems. In the highly-competitive market for consulting services, both new and current clients consistently place their trust in LTK to meet the pressing challenges of their newest projects. Our employees enjoy a challenging and rewarding work environment, populated by highly-skilled co-workers.

As we approach the 100th anniversary of LTKs founding, we look back with pride at our substantial accomplishments. At the same time, we look forward with great anticipation to our next century of support for the passenger rail industry, committed to the values and standards that remain our foundation.&8212 Dominic DiBrito, President