Caltrain Modernization

MTC is a major funding partner of the Caltrain Modernization program to electrify and upgrade Caltrain commuter rail service between San Jose and San Francisco.

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Rendering of new Caltrain Electrical Multiple Unit (EMU).

Over the past decade, Caltrain ridership has increased at a faster rate than that of any other Bay Area transit agency.

To meet Caltrain’s growing need and meet it sustainably, a $1.7 billion upgrade will bring electrification and 21st century service to the San Jose-San Francisco line.

MTC has advocated for federal and state funding — and has directed over $1 billion — to make this program a reality.

Future Connections to the Salesforce Transit Center

Caltrain electrification will enable a future extension of service into the Salesforce Transit Center in downtown San Francisco. This could:

  • Boost daily Caltrain ridership to 111,000
  • Reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions by 176,000 metric tons
  • Reduce vehicle miles traveled annually by 619,000

Sharing Tracks, Reducing Costs

Electrified trains operated by both Caltrain and the California High-Speed Rail Authority will share existing tracks in the Caltrain corridor between San Jose and San Francisco.

This “blended system” will reduce costs, speed implementation, and limit impacts on adjacent neighborhoods.

The blended system may include:

  • Passing tracks in select locations to allow High-Speed Rail trains to bypass Caltrain trains
  • New grade separations and other crossing improvements
  • New train storage and maintenance facility

Electrified trains are quieter, cleaner and will run more frequently.

High-Speed Rail

California’s high-speed rail network — the first in the U.S. — is now under construction and scheduled to begin serving the Bay Area by 2029.

With trains running at speeds over 200 mph in some sections, the high-speed rail system will carry passengers from San Francisco to Los Angeles in less than three hours.

Planned Bay Area stations include:

  • San Francisco
  • Millbrae-SFO
  • San Jose
  • Gilroy

The California high-speed rail system will eventually extend to Sacramento and San Diego, totaling 800 miles with up to 24 stations up and down the state

Read the California High-Speed Rail 2020 Draft Business Plan.

Development of the California High-Speed Rail system’s Bay Area segment is tied closely to the Caltrain Modernization Program.

Partnership

Funding partners for the Caltrain Modernization program include:

  • MTC
  • Caltrain
  • California High-Speed Rail Authority
  • San Francisco County Transportation Authority
  • San Mateo County Transportation Authority
  • Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority
  • City of San Jose
  • City and County of San Francisco
  • Transbay Joint Powers Authority