Capitol Corridor Popularity Shatters Ridership Records

Luna Salaver Press Releases

Northern California travelers have made the Capitol Corridor one of the most popular intercity passenger rail services in the nation. The Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (CCJPA) announced its year-end Federal Fiscal Year 2011 (FFY2011) results, which shattered ridership and revenue thresholds set in previous federal fiscal years. Over 1.7 million passengers rode Capitol Corridor from October 1, 2010 through September 30, 2011, resulting in revenue of $27.2 million. Officials attribute Capitol Corridor’s popularity to its consistently high on-time performance (OTP). “Our reliability is due to Union Pacific Railroad’s stellar dispatching and Amtrak’s commitment to improving mechanical performance.” CCJPA Board Chair Bob Franklin said. “This year, our OTP hit 95%, continuing to keep the Capitol Corridor as the nation’s OTP leader in the Amtrak system for the past two consecutive years.”

Capitol Corridor’s results for all three performance measures showed a steady upward trend this fiscal year, demonstrating that travelers who try trains, stay on trains. “Our popularity has made the Capitol Corridor the third busiest passenger rail service in the nation,” Franklin added. The Northeast Corridor holds the top spot and the Pacific Surfliner is second.

“We ended FFY2011 on a high note,” CCJPA Managing Director David Kutrosky said. “In September, 145,894 passengers rode our trains—an 11% ridership increase over September 2010. Revenue showed even better results with a 16% increase over September 2010. Both of these results surpassed previous Capitol Corridor records for the month of September.”

Another factor that helped fill seats was the successful strategy to offer various discounts on the Capitol Corridor. “We know that many folks calibrate their travel choices to what’s in their wallet,” CCJPA Marketing and Communications Officer Priscilla Kalugdan said. “In September we offered several promotions, including Seniors Ride Half-Off (Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays), Kids Ride Free on Weekends, group discount travel rates and discounted fares to the Oakland Coliseum station for the Ringling Brothers circus, and Oakland Athletics and Raider games.”