Who we are
Friends of Caltrain is a nonprofit grass-roots advocacy organization supporting stable funding and successful modernization of Caltrain, as part of an integrated regional transit network, accessible to all. We have over 7000 supporters in the San Francisco Peninsula Corridor between San Francisco and San Jose, including all cities on the line.
Organizations we work with:
Environmental and sustainable transportation/land use advocacy organizations such as Sierra Club, TransForm, Greenbelt Alliance, bicycle coalitions
Local neighborhood and civic groups
Business groups (Silicon Valley Leadership Coalition, Bay Area Council, local chambers of commerce).
Mission and Vision
A financially stable, electrified rail system, with frequent all-day service, easy access via transit, walking and biking, and well integrated into transit-supportive land uses.
We want to see:
1. Frequent, all day service to more stations on a clock face schedule.
2. Regional schedule and fare integration for easy transit transfers.
3. High ridership, serving people of all ages and walks of life
4. Connection to Downtown SF Transbay Terminal with frequent all day service
5. Stations which are accessed primarily by transit, walking or biking
6. Transit-supportive land uses around stations, implemented through comprehensive station area planning efforts.
7. Dedicated, efficient, and customer-focused governance and management.
8. Stable funding
STEPS YOU CAN TAKE NOW TO SAVE CALTRAIN
This page always has the latest steps to save Caltrain. Bookmark this page and come back for updates.
It doesn’t make any sense for the backbone of transit service on the Peninsula to not have committed funding.Â Sign up hereÂ to stay informed and take action about next steps to get stable funding for Caltrain
As of July 6, 2012, Caltrain modernization is funded as part of the state legislature’s passage of high speed rail appropriations. This means that those of us on the Caltrain corridor will most likely see a better train schedule in the foreseeable future. Caltrain will be able to serve more stations with the same or better trip times, at lower cost, not to mention less pollution.
There will be a lot to do to make sure the plans for Caltrain modernization meet the needs of riders and local areas. Your feedback will be needed as Caltrain does the planning over the next year with community input. Â Sign up here to adopt your station and help shape how a modernized Caltrain will work for decades to come.
If Caltrain had wifi it would be an even better alternative compared to driving. Tell Caltrain to please add wifi on the trains.
Tell your friends – share this web page with friends and colleages by email, Facebook, and Twitter.
Keep up to date by reading fast-breaking news on the Green Caltrain blog.
Community mobilization is making a difference. If there is continued vocal effort, the three counties and MTC can come up with plans for longterm stable funding and successful Caltrain modernization.
About Friends of Caltrain
Friends of Caltrain is a grassroots coalition of neighborhood groups, employers, environmental groups, transit advocates, and transit riders advocating for the longterm viability of Caltrain’s critical local and regional transit service.
How you can participate
Are you interested in ongoing, accurate information about Caltrain funding, modernization, service, station area planning, and ways to get involved at a regional, and local level? Â Sign up here for updates.
You can play a key role in decisions about the station areas where you live and work.Â Sign up here to volunteer for the Adopt-a-Station Campaign.
Yoriko Kishimoto, Chair
Board Director, MidPeninsula Regional Open Space District
Former Mayor, Palo Alto; Former Board Member, VTA
Pete Rasmussen, Secretary
Board Member, BayRail Alliance
Mountain View Coalition for Sustainable Planning
Elizabeth Alexis, Treasurer
Californians for Responsible Rail Design
Jarrett Mullen, Vice Chair
Mountain View Coalition for Sustainable Planning
Former MTC Commissioner, Caltrain Joint Powers Board Member, San Mateo Mayor
Board Member Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce and Transportation Committee Chair
San Mateo County Transportation Authority CAC
Adina Levin, Project Director
Vice Chair, Caltrain Citizensâ€™ Advisory Committee
Friends of Caltrain got organized in 2010 under the threat of nearly 50% cuts to Caltrain service. Â When drastic cuts were presented as a â€œdone dealâ€, we organized instead. Â Thousands of community spoke up loudly and clearly. The region worked together to keep Caltrain running and to set the stage for growth.
Friends of Caltrain started as an ad hoc, zero-budget organization, with in-kind support from Bay Rail Alliance and other partners. Â To be able to continue working toward stable funding for a modern, frequent service, Friends of Caltrain bootstrapped itself in 2013 into a nonprofit organization, utilizing a 501c3 nonprofit, Foundation for Regional Transit, that was started many years ago by the founders of Bay Rail Alliance.
Subject: Caltrain 2.0: 1) Grade separations less than $800M; 2) Battery electrification less than $700M
Sent 6/15/16 via USPS mail to these recipients
Sent 7/1/16 via email to these recipients (except Assembly Transportation Committee)
Caltrain Board of Directors
State Senator Jerry Hill
Assembly Member Richard S. Gordon
State Senate Transportation and Housing Committee
Assembly Transportation Committee
I respectfully request that the alternatives below to the current Caltrain plans for grade separations and for electrification be considered.
The full reports are at: http://www.mikeforster.net/caltrain.
One report is Caltrain 2.0 – Elevated Crossings. This report advocates a single project to finish grade-separating Caltrain by elevating Caltrain tracks above the remaining grade crossings with these characteristics:
* Elevates 16 miles of tracks and platforms for 6 stations.
* Lowers only 2 existing grade crossings to become automobile underpasses.
* All gradients are less than 1%.
* Quieter than current grade crossings.
* Can be made visually attractive.
* Recovers over 10 miles of right-of-way under elevated tracks for other purposes.
* For less than $800M.
The other report is Caltrain 2.0 – Battery-Powered. This report advocates replacing the planned OCS electrification approach with battery-powered independently-powered electric multiple units (IPEMUs) or battery locomotives, with these characteristics:
* Feasible with advancing battery technologies.
* Less impact to surroundings and operations.
* Easily extendable to additional locations.
* Visually more attractive.
* Less expensive – perhaps $615M or less vs. $1.5B for OCS electrification.
* Separates Caltrain from CA HSR – CA HSR would terminate in San Jose.
Thank you very much for taking time to consider these alternatives.
Mike Forster, Systems Engineer [Senior Manager, Systems and Software Engineering (retired)]