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VTA Proposes Extension of Light Rail to the Town of Los Gatos

Existing Mountain View-Winchester line will expand by 1.6 miles to town borders.

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority has proposed an extension of the Mountain View to Winchester Boulevard light rail line by 1.6 miles by way of the Vasona Light Rail Extension Project.

The extension would begin at Winchester Station in Campbell and continue within the VTA right-of-way to the Town of Los Gatos. 

VTA has prepared a Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Assessment (SEIR/EA).

In accordance with current state and federal environmental laws and guidelines, the Draft SEIR/EA presents design changes to the project that was previously approved in 2000 while also disclosing the environmental impacts of those design changes. 

On Tuesday, Dec. 4, a meeting will be held 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Campbell Public Library, 77 Harrison Ave. to discuss the project. Members of the public are encouraged to attend to review the SEIR/EA, speak with staff about the project, and provide comments.

The original Vasona Corridor Project proposed light rail service from downtown San Jose through the City of Campbell to the Town of Los Gatos.

The first portion, downtown San Jose to the Winchester Station in Campbell, opened for revenue service on Oct. 1, 2005, adding 5.3 miles and eight stations to VTA’s 36.9-mile light rail system. 

"As the fourth major light rail extension since 1999, the line to Campbell has provided a convenient and economical travel option for West Valley residents, given VTA customers direct access to the multi-modal San Jose Diridon transit hub, and doubled light rail service along North First Street in San Jose," said Los Gatos Councilman Joe Pirzynski and VTA board vice chairman.

Pirzynski also served on the Vasona Corridor Advisory Committee from 2001-2005. "I am encouraged to see the extension project moving through the environmental process which gets us one step closer to becoming eligible for federal funding."

The proposed extension will be implemented in two phases based on funding availability.

Project features in phase 1 include construction of a double set of light rail tracks at the Winchester Station; expansion of parking capacity at the Winchester Station; and a new Vasona Junction Station along with a park and ride lot. 

Phase 2 would construct a new Hacienda Light Rail Station with an optional park and ride lot.

The cost of the project is estimated to be $175 million.

For more information, visit the Vasona Light Rail Extension Project page on VTA’s website or contact VTA Community Outreach at 408-321-7575.

To stay current on project updates, sign up for automated emails or text alerts by clicking the blue envelope on the VTA website at www.vta.org

VTA is an independent special district that provides sustainable, accessible, community-focused transportation options that are innovative, environmentally responsible, and promote the vitality of our region. 

VTA is responsible for bus, light rail and paratransit operations and also serves as the county’s congestion management agency. As such, VTA is responsible for countywide transportation planning, including congestion management issues, specific highway improvement projects, pedestrian and bicycle improvement projects, and provides these services throughout the county, including the municipalities of Campbell, Cupertino, Gilroy, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Los Gatos, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Mountain View, Palo Alto, San Jose, Santa Clara, Saratoga and Sunnyvale. VTA continually builds partnerships to deliver transportation solutions that meet the evolving mobility needs of Santa Clara County.

Dale Pollek December 03, 2012 at 08:49 PM
Great to see the light rail still has momentum to expand, albeit in small steps. Then again, it will take many and one step at a time to recover all the rail that was ripped up thanks to auto & tire industry a long time ago. Maybe most ironic is that old-timers of Los Gatos have many a time commented to me how they used to enjoy the train station (which came from San Francisco) in downtown Los Gatos. That is something I very highly doubt will ever happen (even just light rail) in my life time. I suspect this is the end of the line for Los Gatos direction, but glad to see the VTA is making progress and still moving forward. When (is?) will Cupertino get connected?
Frank Geefay December 03, 2012 at 10:36 PM
VTA is planning a BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) route to go from the Light Rail in north San Jose up Stevens Creek Blvd. to De Anza. The 23 line which this will supplement has the highest ridership in the VTA system. This should considerably reduce commute time for De Anza students, the highest user of the 23 bus line, considerably and provide more frequent pickups. It will also serve the ever expanding Cupertino business community along Stevens Creek Blvd. However I doubt we will ever see light rail in Cupertino in our lifetimes. If BRT becomes successful we wont need it. It is essentially a light rail on rubber tires.

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