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Caltrain $25 Billion Plan Will Make Commuter Rail System More Like BART

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) - Caltrain announced a $25 billion plan to make the commuter rail service more like BART. The transit agency says you can expect peak hour travel to include 8 trains in both directions every hour, a bullet train every 15 minutes, and that service will jump from 65,000 people a day to 180,000 by 2040.

"We hear what people are asking for, we see the growth in the corridor and this is our plan to address that," Caltrain Director of Policy Development Sebastian Petty said.

"You wouldn't need to look aT the schedule anymore, you could just show up there would be faster all-day service with better connections up and down the corridor," Petty said.

Caltrain has already started work on its electrification of the train system, which will be fully implemented by 2022.

By 2029, Caltrain will connect Gilroy to the Transbay Terminal, in San Francisco. The agency is also considering adding transbay crossing to the East Bay.

Funding for the plan is a little more fluid for the time being. One option is a sales tax in San Mateo, Santa Clara and San Francisco counties. It would be a 1/8th of a cent tax estimated to generate $100 million a year.

Commuters say they would support a sales tax if it would improve service.

"Somehow you have to pay for it," said Matthew Gyves. "It's not going to be free so if a little bit of sales tax pays for that then I think that makes sense."

"All the stops take a long time, so if they could do it quicker I would be all for it," added Elaine Karas.

The Board Of Directors for Caltrain vote on this 2040 plan on August 1st, then local municipalities would weigh in on whether the sales tax is something they would support.

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