Baby bullet hits the PeninsulaBy Brian Foley
"We are delivering a baby today!" announced County Supervisor Mike Nevin at the unveiling of the long-awaited "baby bullet" train Friday, set to begin service on Caltrain's tracks Monday.
The completion of the $110 million project allows Caltrain to resume weekend service, which was suspended nearly two years ago.
Caltrain hosted the "baby announcement" ceremony Friday afternoon, featuring live music, milk and cookies and State Sen. Jackie Speier, D-Hillsborough, who was largely credited with securing the funds for its completion. She said that one five-car baby bullet train will take 800 cars off the freeway during the commute hours.
"This baby bullet train is going to be a life-saver when it comes to congestion, when it comes to traffic and when it comes to relief," she said.
At 79 mph, the new service will carry passengers from San Jose to San Francisco in 57 minutes. The project required the installation and adjustments of 34 miles of track, which now enables trains to pass each other while maintaining speed.
"It was a major accomplishment to install this complex system in two short years," said John McLemore, chairman of the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. He added that service for the next two weekends will be free.
The new train will only stop in seven of the 32 total stations, which includes the Mountain View, Hillsdale and Millbrae stations. These stations were picked based on a study that focused on where the bulk of commuters were coming from.
Copyright ©2004 San Mateo County Times. Published 06/05/2004.