Tag: san joaquins

Environmental Impact Report for Valley Rail Project Now Open for Public Comment

Are you sitting at home, twiddling your thumbs, looking for something to do? Lucky for you, the Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for the Valley Rail Sacramento Extension Project is now available for public review! You have until May 15, 2020 at 5:00 p.m to send in any comments you have.

Unlike many rail projects, this is one you should take seriously, because they got $500 million in funds to actually build the thing. As I mentioned back in 2018, the improvements are aimed at both the Amtrak San Joaquin line and the ACE commuter line.

According to the project team, the purpose of Valley Rail will be: Click to read more!

Amtrak California Ridership Update

Nothing quite says Christmas like fresh graphs and Amtrak ridership stats. Since I haven’t done one of these Amtrak California ridership updates since August, I figured we were well overdue in taking a look at the most recent trends. In my last update, we had ridership stats up to May, today I have until September.

The San Joaquin continues to be the line showing the greatest gains in ridership. The Capitol Corridor and Pacific Surfliner are not showing much growth, as they are pretty stable compared to last years numbers (up a bit, then down a bit). Next year should continue to show growth on all lines as the economy improves, resulting in more people moving about. Megabus has started service between Sf and Sacramento which may impact Amtrak ridership in that corridor.

How much has the San Joaquin grown?

In June of 2011, the San Joaquin exceeded 100k riders in one month for the first time ever. It exceeded that again in July.

This year, the San Joaquin took over 100k passengers for FIVE months in a row; April-August. 

On the other end, the lowest ridership month was January, with 83,053. Meanwhile, in 2009, 6 months had ridership below 80k, with three months in the 60’s. Pretty big leaps in ridership numbers.

Ridership on all three lines, October 2008 – September 2012. All three lines show upwards growth, although the San Joaquin is growing fastest.

All three lines, past 15 months

San Joaquin, an easier way to visualize year on year increases

San Joaquin, past 13 months

Capitol Corridor, past 13 months

Pacific Surfliner, past 13 months

How the California lines compare nationally for July

How the California lines compare nationally for September. The Downeastern recently got extended, and just missed the cut. Expect it to show up in the top 10 ranking soon enough. Important to note that positions 8-12 are quite competitive.

 Enjoy your holidays!

Amtrak California offering 20% college discount

Amtrak has been offering college students in California a discounted ticket option for travel from now until June 13, 2013. Sadly, there are blackout dates, like Thanksgiving weekend, but there are many opportunities to save money.

Not all college IDs are valid for the discount, but in the Central Valley students at Fresno State, Fresno City, Bakersfield State, and UC Merced are among those included in the promotion.

Tickets must be purchased online at least three days in advance at this website, which also has the full list of details and restrictions. ID is presented on board if requested.

If you’re making the trip anyway, why not save money. If you plan on driving for your trip, do the math and there’s a good chance taking the train will save you money.