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Rail News: Passenger Rail

Caltrain seeks ways to reduce the number of autos driven to stations


By 2030, Caltrain’s ridership could increase by as much as 100 percent, according to recent forecasts. But if riders continue to drive to stations, parking will become more restricted — some stations already have limited parking during peak hours — and ridership will become constrained, Caltrain officials believe.

So, the agency is conducting a study on ways to shift riders’ use of automobiles as a means to access stations toward bicycles, walking and bus transit. Caltrain serves 30 stations between San Francisco and Gilroy, Calif.

A recent passenger survey showed that 39 percent of riders drive to a station or are dropped off; 27 percent walk; 22 percent use other transit services; and 8 percent ride bikes. The study will review a range of improvements that would make it easier for passengers to walk, take transit or bike to stations, such as better signage or developing more housing near stations.

Caltrain is seeking public input on a final “access policy” that the agency plans to present to its board on May 1.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 4/8/2010