December 10, 2013 > Caltrans and Amtrak California set rail ridership record
Caltrans and Amtrak California set rail ridership record
Submitted By Trent Freeman
In a state noted for its freeways, Californians are riding trains in unprecedented numbers. In 2012-13, Amtrak California carried a record 3.9 million passengers on its thriving Pacific Surfliner and San Joaquin rail lines. Over the past ten years, ridership on the Pacific Surfliner, the second-busiest rail corridor in the nation, and the San Joaquin, the fifth-busiest, increased by nearly one million passengers, and ticket revenues skyrocketed from $44 million to $102 million.
Caltrans provides funding to run all three intercity passenger rail lines in California: the Pacific Surfliner, the San Joaquin, and the Capitol Corridor, which had a combined ridership of 5.6 million passengers in 2012-13. The recently approved 2013 California State Rail Plan includes plans to add more trips to each of the routes.
Caltrans has invested $460 million since 1979 to improve the San Joaquin corridor between Bakersfield-Sacramento-and the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Area. Passenger service has increased from one daily round trip to six (four between Oakland and Bakersfield and two between Sacramento and Bakersfield).
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