Commuter railroad Caltrain recently released its draft Service Vision for the next 20-plus years of service on the line. Under the vision recommended by Caltrain’s staff, “fast and frequent service would be the standard on the line.”
The draft Caltrain Business Plan 2040 Service Vision aims to ensure that “Caltrain can continue to provide the greatest value possible to its riders and the Bay Area well into the future.” Over the last two decades, Caltrain said its ridership has more than doubled, and today Caltrain serves nearly 65,000 passengers per day, on average.
Through this vision, peak hours would see eight trains per direction per hour, with all-day Baby Bullet express service every 15 minutes, and increased off-peak and weekend services. This increased frequency, paired with longer trains, would massively expand capacity to nearly 180,000 riders per day, Caltrain noted. The plan envisions end-to-end, electrified service from Gilroy to San Francisco all day in both directions.
The vision would also ensure that Caltrain is ready to expand and integrate into a regional rail network over the next 20 years, including the expected Downtown Extension to the Salesforce Transit Center in Downtown San Francisco, a potential renewed rail corridor across the Dumbarton Bridge and enhancements at Diridon Station in San Jose.
It also prepares Caltrain for a future shared corridor with High Speed Rail, and considers opportunities presented by a second Transbay crossing, expanded service to the Monterey Peninsula, and investments along the Altamont Corridor Express and Capital Corridor services.
“This is a vision that ensures Caltrain can continue to be what it has been for so many years: an indispensable resource for the region and our riders,” Hartnett said. “Our long-range vision will improve frequency, sustainability and connectivity, while ensuring that Caltrain continues to add value to communities at every stop along the way.
“I am very proud of the work done to get the Business Plan to this point. It has been an expansive, rigorous and challenging process that has required all of us to ask big questions and think critically about the future of the Caltrain corridor.”