With Proposition 6 soundly defeated by California voters earlier this month, billions of dollars of critical transportation funding were preserved statewide. This included $165 million in grant funding to modernize Caltrain, and we’re ready to see Caltrain move forward swiftly with the planning and allocation of those funds.
We’ve consistently supported the purchase of more electrified train cars with this funding to continue expanding capacity on our regional transit system. However, when designs for the new electrified cars were revealed, we were immediately concerned that the bike cars lacked seats in view of bikes. Now that funding is secured, your San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is urging Caltrain to resolve this known issue.
The Caltrain Board will be meeting on Dec. 6, and to make sure our concerns are heard, we’ve written a letter to outline this issue with one, simple request: The new electrified bike cars must provide seats in view of bikes.
The new bike car layout holds 36 bikes but will lack an adequate number of seats in view of bikes. Given that bikes are stolen onboard even today with the current bike car designs, we urge Caltrain to address this problem directly for their new electrified cars.
We know that Caltrain electrification is critical to the ongoing and future sustainability of our region. With new cars and more frequent, reliable service, let’s make sure that our public transit doesn’t take a step backwards in accommodating bicycles onboard and instead, continues to be the bike-friendly transit system it has always been.