By Railfan & Railroad Staff
CLEWISTON, Fla. — U.S. Sugar has revealed a new paint scheme for the passenger cars it will use on the steam-powered Sugar Express. The new paint scheme was designed with the help of FMW Solutions and pays homage to the famed City of Miami passenger train, which once ran between Chicago and Miami over the Illinois Central, Central of Georgia, Atlantic Coast Line, and Florida East Coast Railroad.
The first car is named Lake Okeechobee, in honor of Florida’s largest freshwater lake near Clewiston. Sources close to U.S. Sugar said the yellow, red and green scheme will become standard on the Sugar Express.
Lake Okeechobee is one of three cars U.S. Sugar purchased from the United Railroad Historical Society of New Jersey earlier this year. The cars, two built for the GN and one built for the Union Pacific (although later sold to GN), were part of the URHS collection and were leased to the embattled Iowa Pacific, which abandoned them in Mississippi with a number of other pieces of equipment. URHS was forced to sell some of the equipment in order to repair and move other pieces.
The restored cars will be part of a train led by former Florida East Coast 4-6-2 148, which was restored by U.S. Sugar last year. The public will have their first chance to ride the Sugar Express in December.