San Mateo Parking Track

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The project will create a "parking track" to replace one that was removed to facilitate the construction of the 25th Avenue Grade Separation Project. A "parking track" is a temporary storage space for train maintenance equipment. It typically includes a track approximately 1000’ in length and an access road. Parking tracks allow for efficient use of limited work windows to keep the railroad functioning properly.

The previous San Mateo Parking Track was in existence prior to Caltrain becoming the operator of passenger service. Located in the Bay Meadows area, it was used by Caltrain for 25 years until the grade separation project necessitated its removal. When the replacement parking track is complete, it would likely be accessed approximately once a month as needed. 

There are over a dozen parking tracks distributed in residential and commercial areas along the corridor. There is only one maintenance yard, which is a large 20 acre multi-acre complex operation and facility that is located in San Jose (see photos of existing parking tracks and the maintenance yard).

In spring/early summer 2019, soil was distributed at a potential parking track  location. A community meeting was held on June 11, 2019 and feedback received. Thereafter, Caltrain worked closely with the City of San Mateo to evaluate options at the current proposed parking track location as well as other locations. The team reviewed 28 different options, including the options suggested by members of the community (see fall 2019 feasibility assessment). Another community meeting was held on October 8, 2019, where these options were discussed and additional feedback was collected.

Three focus group meetings (8-10 community members) were held in November/December 2019, and an additional option was examined (see January 2020 feasibility assessment). A community meeting was held on January 13, 2020 where an update on efforts since the last community meeting was given, and the City presented their staff recommendation. 

On January 21, 2020, a City Council Study Session was held where the staff recommendation was presented. Residents presented three new options and Council asked for a technical assessment of these options. 

At a City Council Study Session on February 18, 2020, Caltrain presented the technical assessment and it was determined the replacement parking track would be located in between 10th and 14th Avenues with neighborhood enhancements.

In March and April 2020, Caltrain and City staff launched online surveys to identify the neighborhood’s enhancement preferences. For this location the community preferred a 12’ block sound wall with creeping fig vegetation.

In May 2020, the draft design and renderings were posted online beginning a month-long comment period, and a virtual community meeting was held on July 13, 2020. Neighborhood feedback prompted the addition of trees at 10th and 14th Avenues; a commitment to replace any tree removed for the enhancement wall on a one-for-one basis on the project site to the extent possible; and adjusting the location of a turn around. The enhancement wall will also block access at 10th and 14th Avenues. 

Construction for the project is anticipated in summer/fall 2021. Prior to the start of any installation work, Caltrain will communicate with residents, businesses and other interested members of the public to discuss the project in more detail. 

Community Impacts 
During the installation of the parking track, due to the nature of construction there may be temporary, localized noise impacts. When the replacement parking track is complete, it would likely be accessed approximately once a month as needed. 

Public Involvement
The neighborhood enhancements for the replacement parking track that will be located between 10th and 14th Avenues were determined by the following community outreach process:

  Purpose  When
Online Survey #1*  To determine the neighborhood's enhancement priorities.   March 5 to 15, 2020

Open House Cancelled

Online Survey #2*

In light of the COVID-19 outbreak, Caltrain and the City of San Mateo followed local public health agencies and CDC guidance regarding public meetings and cancelled the April 7, 2020 Open House.  A second online survey helped determine the type of vegetation for the neighborhood priority. Renderings were included.

April 9 to 15, 2020

Draft Design & 
The draft design (plan view) was posted and shared, and feedback welcomed at May 21 to June 19,2020
Virtual Community Meeting

Recording of the Parking Track Enhancements Virtual Community Meeting. July 13, 2020
95% Design Completion Will be shared online and via distribution list Winter 2021

*The City of San Mateo uses Speak Up San Mateo, a platform run by OpenGov, for its surveys. 

Prior to the start of any installation work, Caltrain will communicate with residents, businesses and other interested members of the public. Caltrain also offers a weekly construction notice for those interested in the latest construction activities. To sign-up please visit For questions please call the Caltrain Customer Service at 1-800-660-4287 or email 







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