The Capitol Corridor passenger train system opened a new Fairfield/Vacaville station Monday to give more Solano County commuters a way to travel to Sacramento and the Bay Area by rail.
At the same time, the agency reduced station “dwell” times at four stops: Davis, Martinez, Emeryville and Oakland-Jack London Square. Trains previously stopped for two minutes at those stations. Now, they stop for one minute. Most other stations already employ one-minute dwell times.
The goal is to add the new stop without increasing overall travel times, Capitol Corridor executive David Kutrosky said.
The Capitol Corridor runs from Auburn to San Jose, although most travelers between the valley and the Bay Area start and stop in Sacramento.
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The new station, with a parking lot, is near the intersection of Vanden and Peabody roads, south of Vacaville near the Fairfield city line.
Ryan Panganiban, civil engineer with the city of Fairfield, said the station will serve as a hub for future growth. Some 6,000 new homes are planned in the surrounding area. The project cost $50 million and includes widening Peabody Road as well as building a Peabody overpass over the tracks.
Kutrosky said the new station will serve that growing area and could lighten the burden in Davis, the next station to the east, where the train parking lot typically fills.
The agency will begin testing trains early next year at faster speeds on some revamped sections of the line as part of the system’s ongoing “travel time savings” project. Kutrosky said Capitol Corridor officials hope to make train travel competitive time-wise with vehicle use on Interstate 80.
“We’re adding a new station and keeping a competitive travel time,” Kutrosky said.