Caltrain to offer free rides for New Year's Eve revelers

Caltrain to provide more frequent off-peak, weekend service

in Community

Caltrain will operate a new schedule starting Monday, Dec. 14, that provides more frequent off-peak and weekend service, which the transit agency says will better accommodate essential workers during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The new schedule provides 68 trains during the weekday, with two trains per hour, per direction running throughout the day, allowing for 30-minute frequency at higher demand stations, according to the transit agency.

Caltrain will also provide hourly Local service on weekends instead of the current 90-minute frequency. Weekend Baby Bullet service will be discontinued and train service will be extended to the Tamien station, eliminating the weekend and holiday Tamien-San Jose Diridon Shuttle. The weekend changes also include a separate schedule for Saturdays and Sundays to maintain connections from/to Millbrae BART.

Currently, weekend ridership makes up 17 percent of total ridership, which is three times greater than pre-COVID-19, the transit agency said.

In addition to the service changes, the Atherton Station will be permanently closed Saturday, Dec. 19, per an agreement with the Town of Atherton. Caltrain will reallocate service to nearby stations such as Menlo Park and Redwood City, which have much higher rates of existing ridership and where denser land uses are projected to generate higher levels of demand for future rail service.

Ridership is not expected to fully recover in 2021.