At today’s meeting, the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board (JPB), which manages Caltrain, authorized the execution of an agreement with Stanford University to help further the development of the Caltrain Business Plan.
The Business Plan’s strategy and scope, which was approved by the JPB in February, will define the long-term vision for the fast-growing commuter rail system that connects San Francisco and Silicon Valley. The JPB is collaborating with government agencies, community partners, contractors and stakeholders to explore economic, policy and technical approaches.
Under the new agreement, Stanford’s Land, Buildings & Real Estate (LBRE) group will contribute in-kind technical assistance to support the Business Plan and will help secure independent technical resources. In addition, the JPB and Stanford will collaborate on identifying and developing external sources to help fund the plan. As project lead, the JPB will determine the contents of the final Business Plan in its sole discretion.
“We are very excited about collaborating with Stanford University’s LBRE team on the Caltrain Business Plan,” said JPB Chair Jeannie Bruins. “Stanford is a well-respected institution in our community, and they bring new ideas, resources and perspectives to the conversation. We welcome the opportunity to work together to create an innovative plan to help shape the future of the Caltrain corridor.”
“Caltrain is a significant transportation resource for Bay Area residents, visitors, workers and students and is a critical component in meeting the region’s transit demands and in managing traffic congestion," said Robert Reidy, vice president for Land, Buildings and Real Estate at Stanford. “We look forward to working with Caltrain to plan for a future of connected, high capacity, and financially and environmentally sustainable rail service that meets regional transportation needs.”
The Caltrain Business Plan will allow the railway to identify a service model that supports long-term regional job and population growth, and surging ridership demand. This work will involve an exploration of economic, policy and technical approaches that will provide a better understanding of passenger needs and opportunities to maximize the value of Caltrain for local communities.
The Caltrain Business Plan will also look at long-range opportunities to integrate regional rail services that could traverse and connect to the Caltrain corridor. The final Business Plan will include specific targets for service and capacity growth that will describe how Caltrain should grow to meet market demand.
Work on the Caltrain Business Plan began in spring 2017 after the agency awarded contracts for construction of the Caltrain Electrification project that allows the system to replace decades-old diesel equipment with modernized electric trains. When complete, Caltrain Electrification will immediately improve the system’s capacity, service frequency and travel times, but the strategies recommended in the final Business Plan will need to be implemented to fully realize the benefits that electrification makes possible. The Business Plan will be completed with input from communities along the corridor and is anticipated to be a year-long process.
About Caltrain: Owned and operated by the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board, Caltrain provides commuter rail service from San Francisco to San Jose, with limited commute service to Gilroy. Caltrain enjoyed five years of consecutive monthly ridership increases, surpassing more than 65,000 average weekday riders. While the Joint Powers Board assumed operating responsibilities for the service in 1992, the railroad celebrated 150 years of continuous passenger service in 2014. Planning for the next 150 years of Peninsula rail service, Caltrain is on pace to electrify the system, reduce diesel emissions by 97 percent by 2040 and add more service to more stations.
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