This weekend the draft environmental report was released for future Caltrain electrification, bringing the process one step closer to fruition, along with the designs for 35 percent of its fully grade-separated Peninsula path. This means a couple of things for San Francisco: first, electrification will allow Caltrain to increase its peak service by 20 percent, running up to six trains per hour compared to the current five. Second, eliminating the current diesel engines will provider cleaner, quieter trains running along the line.
Perhaps most importantly, however, is the fact that electrification is a required step in allowing Caltrain, and future high-speed rail, to access the under-construction Transbay Transit Center. Funding for the tunnel portion from the current terminus along 4th Street to the transit center is currently tied-up in high-speed rail funding, but planners are moving forward. The $1.225 billion electrification, process is expected to be completed by 2019, including replacing 75 percent of the train car fleet with electric trains.
·Caltrain releases environmental report for electrification project [SF Examiner]
·Caltrain Upgrades [Curbed SF]