From DAVID B. KUTROSKY, Managing Director
Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority
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Service Performance Overview
FY2014 Projected Results
The Capitol Corridor finished the FY 2014 on a high note. In September
2014, a total of 119,034 passengers rode Capitol Corridor trains, an
impressive increase of 7.6% compared to September 2013, representing six
straight months of ridership increases for the service. Revenue for
September was an equally impressive 8.8% over revenue in September 2013.
The year to-date (YTD) Operating Ratio is 50%, below the business plan
standard of 53% due to revenues being budget projections. While September
2014 On-time Performance (OTP) dropped to 93% primarily due to en route and
terminal delays from mechanical malfunctions and failures, the YTD OTP for
the Capitol Corridor is 95%, maintaining Capitol Corridor as the most
reliable service in the Amtrak system for the fifth year in a row.
Provided below are tables that show (1) detailed city-pair data for the top
25 city-pair stations for FY 2014 (Oct 2013 – Sept 2014) and (2) Detailed
data OTP by train is provided below for FY 2014, which illustrates the
overall superior reliability of the Capitol Corridor service all trains
operating at a minimum of 90% OTP, except for the notable exceptions of
weekend train 748, which tend to be delayed by road vehicles that get
high-centered on the tracks running through the Oakland Embarcadero.
October 2014 Results
Performance results for October 2014 (the start of FY 2015) continued the
positive trend from the latter half of FY 2014. A total of 131,730
passengers rode the Capitol Corridor trains in October 2014, representing a
4.7% increase over October 2013. Revenue was up an extraordinary 11.0%
compared to October 2013, which placed the Operating Ratio at 50%, above
the standard of 47%. On-time Performance (OTP) for October 2014 slipped to
92% due to extensive mechanical delays in the first half of October 2014.
The service performance for the Capitol Corridor for October 2014 excelled
in all categories except for one – on-time performance which slipped from
the 95%-96% range to 92%. The main culprit is clear: extensive mechanical
delays either en-route or cancellations at initial terminal stations
accounted for 34% of all late Capitol Corridor trains in October 2014.
Historically, late trains from mechanical incidents or delays are typically
half [17%] of what Capitol Corridor passengers experienced in October 2014.
The good news is that Amtrak management working with CCJPA mechanical staff
have implemented changes to the frequency of training, improved
communications and protocols between work shifts, and revised train
readiness standards. These changes have significantly reduced the
mechanical delays in the second half of October 2014 that have carried
forward into November 2014.
Customer Service Program Upgrades:
· CCJPA Bicycle Access Program: Using the available rolling stock, CCJPA
has worked with Amtrak to ensure that there are in most cases two cars
on selected trainsets (in the cab car, opposite the locomotive, and car
# 2 positions), with extra bicycle capacity. This on-board program was
instituted in response to the growing number of passengers who board
Capitol Corridor trains with a bicycle – an increase from 5% mode share
four years ago to 11% today.
To provide additional bike capacity, consistent with the adopted CCJPA
Bicycle Access Plan, the CCJPA is seeking an allocation of $556,000 at
the October 2014 California Transportation Commission (CTC) meeting to
install bicycle eLockers at 13 of the 17 stations Capitol Corridor
serves. (Exceptions being joint Capitol Corridor/BART stations and
Caltrain stations, which already have bike lockers.) Concurrently, the
CCJPA is working to implement a folding bicycle lease program to further
reduce on-train bicycle crowding and/or induce more convenient and safe
Capitol Corridor travel with bicycle access as the first/last mile
portion of the trip.
· Improvements to CCJPA Train Status Feature on Website: A vendor is now
under contract to implement upgrades to the train status feature on the
CCJPA website and via mobile app. It is anticipated that these initial
updates will be tested by the end of November 2014 with full
implementation by February 2015.
· Security Cameras at Capitol Corridor Stations: With initial engineering
design complete, the installation of camera and surveillance equipment
at the Auburn, Rocklin, Roseville, Suisun, Martinez, Emeryville, Oakland
Jack London, and Fremont stations will begin.
· Platform Safety Upgrades: In early 2014, CCJPA and Amtrak staff
initiated a program of safety access upgrades at selected Capitol
Corridor train stations. The upgrades include, but are not limited to,
replacing broken platform tactile edges, repainting platform tactile
edges, restriping yellow safety lines along the main platform,
repainting safety text along platforms, and installing safety signs. In
May 2014, upgrades were completed at the Davis station followed by work
completed in July 2014 at the Roseville, Suisun, Berkeley, and Fremont
stations. The next stations to receive safety upgrades will be Santa
Clara/Great America, Hayward, Oakland-Coliseum, Richmond, and Auburn.
· Positive Train Control Update: The Union Pacific’s plan for PTC
implementation remains the same in that the Los Angeles basin will be
first, with the Northern California area following. Initial reports are
that the implementation of PTC in the LA Basin has been delayed to the
third quarter 2015, putting PTC installation on the Capitol Corridor
route sometime after the fourth quarter of 2015, or perhaps later. A
recent report by the Government Accounting Office has suggested that PTC
installation could be delayed further by a variety of technical and
administrative challenges. However, the recent serious accident on the
Metro North commuter railroad in New York has renewed the visibility of
the PTC installation project.
Installation of the PTC equipment on the state-owned locomotives and cab
control cars is complete, with all locomotives and cab cars equipped. A
schedule will be developed with Caltrain to test state-owned
PTC-installed Capitol Corridor trains in Caltrain territory once the PTC
trackside equipment on the Caltrain route is installed and ready for
· CCJPA Oakland-San Jose Phase 2 Project: The first task has begun for
this project with surveying and conceptual design for the extensions of
the double track in the segment between Fremont to Santa
Clara/University stations. This work does not include the five-mile
section of single track in the Alviso wetlands area. This effort is
continuing in parallel with discussions including UPRR and the
California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA).
· Sacramento to Roseville 3rd Track Environmental Review/Preliminary
Engineering: A Notice of Preparation (NOP), as part of the environmental
documentation compliance process with the California Environmental
Quality Act (CEQA) for the project, was completed and the project team
is now performing the environmental analysis for the preparation of the
respective CEQA and NEPA environmental documents. Staff will continue
discussions with the affected resource agencies and the cities of
Roseville and Sacramento. Additional phases of stakeholder engagement,
as well as public meetings, are on schedule for release of the draft
EIR/EA in late winter 2015, leading toward CEQA adoption of the EIR in
November 2015 by the CCJPA Board. NEPA approval will be subject to the
Federal Railroad Administration (FRA).
Outlook – Closing
For FY 2014, the Capitol Corridor service performance improved over the
last six months of the fiscal year with ridership and revenue increasing by
3% and 2%, respectively, compared to the same six-month period in FY 2013.
FY 2014 also represented the fifth consecutive year that the Capitol
Corridor was the most reliable train service in the national intercity
passenger rail network. This high OTP has parlayed into the highest
customer satisfaction levels in the history of the service. Credit goes to
our host railroads, Union Pacific Railroad and Caltrain, and our operating
partner, Amtrak, for their commitment to make the Capitol Corridor a safe,
frequent, reliable, and high-quality transport service.
With positive service results in October 2014, the Capitol Corridor is
setting the foundation for another solid year of superior performance in FY
2015. Staff will continue to focus on: (1) implementing customer
service/security initiatives and upgrades to improve operational
performance; (2) completing pre-development work for the service expansion
projects (San Jose/Salinas, Placer County); and (3) prepare advocacy
strategies to secure capital grant funds to construct these service