LRT Pictures

Santa Clara
Valley Transportation Authority

Guadalupe Corridor

Santa Clara County, California (San Jose/Silicon Valley)

Last Modified: June 21, 1997

Standard Disclaimer: This information is being provided by me as a private citizen and is in no way to be considered to be official VTA information.

This is Ginger, she resided at one of the Light Rail Stations. This picture was taken while she and other owls living at the same station were being banded for identification purposes. (Photographer: Unknown, Picture provided by Wanda Saxton, Scanned by Eric Rosenberg)

Guadalupe Corridor:

Here is a basic description of the Guadalupe Corridor from one end to the other: I will only describe the southbound in detail, except for the mall area. The only main difference outside of this area is the exact placement of the stations.

I'm going to try to start putting in the crossovers between the Northbound and Southbound tracks. It may take me a while to get them all in.

All street crossings are at grade and controlled by traffic signals unless otherwise noted.

North end is at Old Ironsides Station , intersection of Old Ironsides and Tasman. Beyond the station there is a run-out track (sometimes called a tail track, I've heard both terms used by people working at Light Rail) used to store cars during the midday hours, and for some special events (July 4 Gt. America Fireworks). This track will eventually be part of the Tasman Corridor (West). There is a traffic signal controlled at grade crossing at this location. At the end of this run-out track will be the future Baypointe Station.

Going south, the tracks cross Great America, another at grade crossing, in here is a double crossover so the trains can be on either side of the Old Ironsides platform, then cross the Great America/Convention Center driveways, another at grade crossing. Then you get to Great America Station.

Continuing south you cross Centennial, then go up and over Lafayette with the Tasman Overpass. Then cross Calle del Sol reaching the Lick Mill Station.

You then continue south crossing Lick Mill and then over the Guadalupe River, you cross Rio Linda just beyond the river. Then you cross Vista Montana, Champion, where a new station, Champion Station, opened March 24, 1997, and Rio Robles before turning south into the median of North First Street to Tasman Station.

There is also a run-out track that continues across First St. in the middle of Tasman. If it is built, this section, will become part of the Tasman Corridor (East). Most recently this stretch was used to store the machine for grinding the rails. It is also used to store cars during special events.

Continuing south there is a reverse direction crossover just before you cross Rio Robles again, this time on First Street, and then River Oaks before reaching the southbound River Oaks Station.

Continuing south you cross Montague and then Orchard to arrive at theOrchard Station. Then you continue on to cross Plumeria and Bonaventura to reach the Bonaventura Station. Next you cross Trimble and then Component to reach the Component Station.

After this you keep going south to cross Guadalupe Pkwy/Charcot and then Karina where the Karina Ct. Station is. Next you cross Brokaw, Old Bayshore and then Metro to arrive at the Metro/Airport Station.

You continue south to cross Skyport, Sonora, and then Gish to reach the Gish Station . Next it continues to cross the Hwy 880 on/off-ramps from southbound 880, to the on/off-ramps for northbound 880. Then it crosses Younger, where the tracks branch to go into the Light Rail Maintenance Facility (Guadalupe Division), there was a temporary platform on younger that was used when Light Rail first started service in Dec. 1987, then crossing Hedding to the Civic Center Station just north of Mission.

Continuing south you cross Mission, Taylor, Jackson, and Empire to reach the Japantown/Ayer Station . Then you cross Hawthrone, followed by the Bassett St. Undercrossing that goes under Bassett and the SPTCo. tracks, after which you cross Julian.

After this is where the North and South tracks diverge to travel through Downtown San Jose, the run on the sidewalk on the right side of Second St. or First St.. Going south you turn left, crossing NB First street and Devine, then turn right along the side of Second St..

You then cross St James, stopping at St James Station, then cross St John and Santa Clara to the Santa Clara Station. Continuing on you cross San Fernando, with a stop at Paseo de San Antonio Station, then cross the westbound lanes of San Carlos into the Median of San Carlos to cross First St. and Market before you reach the Convention Center Station.

Here I will describe the northbound section from Convention Center Station to Julian. From the station you cross Market, then cross First St. and the westbound lanes of San Carlos to travel north on the right side of the street to Paseo de San Antonio Station. Then you cross San Fernando to the Santa Clara Station. From here you cross Santa Clara and St John to arrive at the St James Station. Then you continue on to cross St James and Devine where you also cross the NB lanes of First St. and the Southbound Light Rail tracks to get back into the median of First St.

Let's continue south from Convention Center Station. You continue west on San Carlos crossing Almaden Blvd., then there is another single crossover (this is where the trains turned around when the service into downtown was started), and the Guadalupe River before you cross the eastbound lanes of San Carlos to get to the Children's Discovery Museum Station. From here the tracks cross over both Woz Way and Auzerais then turn south into the median of Hwy 87. From here there are no more at grade crossing on the main line to Santa Teresa.

The stations you stop at are, Virginia Station, Tamien Station, just south of Tamien there is a very long crossover, this was used to change directions on the trains when service to Tamien was first stated, Curtner Station, Capitol Station and Branham Station. The Light Rail then drops out of the median of Hwy 87 to stop at the Ohlone-Chynoweth Station. Here the tracks split into two different routings, one is the spur line off to Oakridge and Almaden Stations, the other is the main line to Santa Teresa.

Almaden Spur (Also known as the Lick Spur) : The tracks head west to cross Winfield with a standard RRXng then turn south to parallel Winfield to the Oakridge Station. The tracks then cross Blossom River Way with another standard RRXng and then cross Blossom Hill Blvd with another standard RRXng and proceed to the Almaden Station. This spur line is mostly single tracked, the tracks split just before you get to Almaden Station, and just before Ohlone-Chynoweth Station. The tracks are set up so that a Northbound train can go to either the Northbound or Southbound platform at Ohlone-Chynoweth. During normal operations, the trains operating on the Almaden Spur use the Southbound platform at Ohlone-Chynoweth.

Main Line: The tracks curve to the east and go up into the median of Hwy 85 where you pass the following stations, Blossom Hill Station,Snell Station, and Cottle Station . After this the trains go through a tunnel under the SOUTHBOUND lanes of Hwy 85 to curve into the Santa Teresa Station , just before the station is another double crossover to allow trains to use either side of the platform. This station also has a run-out track used for storing cars. This track crosses one of the driveways through the Park-and-Ride lot.

Major Employment Areas:
Downtown San Jose, San Jose Civic Center, Oakridge Mall, N. First St., Great America

Regional Connections:
Caltrain (at Tamien), Amtrak (with about a 3 block walk at Lick Mill), Express 180 to BART (Santa Clara, St James, Civic Center), Line 68 to Gilroy (Santa Teresa, Cottle, San Antonio, Santa Clara)

The following is a brief description of the various stations. In most cases the split platform stations have the North and South stations far side of the intersection they are at.

Santa Teresa, center of the tracks, P&R; Lot as well as bus
transfer center.
Served by bus routes: 67, 68, 102, 122, 304/304A, IBM Shuttle
POI:  none

  1.04 miles

Cottle, center of tracks, elevator, escalator (up), and P&R; Lot. Access to station is from Cottle Road overpass.
Served by bus routes: 27, 68, Kaiser Shuttle, IBM Demand Response Shuttle
POI:  Kaiser Santa Teresa, both hospital and clinics, IBM Cottle
Rd. Facility.

  1.59 miles

Historical Note:
Between Cottle and Snell there was originally a station planned at Lean.  This station was deleted and Technology Center (Now known as Children's Discovery Museum Station) built instead.  Part of the reason had to do with the local residents being afraid that all the on street parking would be taken up by people using Light Rail.  There was no Park&Ride; lot planned for this station.

Snell, center of tracks, elevator, escalator (up), P&R; Lot and bus transfer center.  The bus transfer center is in the north parking lot, closest to Blossom Hill, (it is visible from the station platform).  Access to station is from Snell Rd. overpass.  There is an elevator to the north half of the Park & Ride lot, with up escalators to both P&R; lots.
Served by bus routes: 66, 102, 122, 304/304A
POI:  Strip mall located north of the station.

  0.68 miles

Blossom Hill, center of tracks, elevator, escalator (up), P&R; Lot and bus transfer center.  Access to station from an undercrossing under the S/B lanes of Hwy 85.
Served by bus route: 27
POI:  Strip mall located across street and slightly west of station.

  1.27 miles to Ohlone-Chynoweth

Almaden Station, center of tracks, P&R; Lot with bus transfer center.
Served by bus route: 13, 64, 65
POI:  Lake Almaden

  0.66 miles

Oakridge, one side of track.
Served by bus route: 13, 67
POI:  Oakridge Shopping Center

  0.55 miles

Historical Note:
Early in the operations of Guadalupe Corridor, there were a limited number of trips originating at Almaden Station and continuing on to Old Ironsides.  They were discontinued due to operational problems.

Ohlone-Chynoweth, split platform with walkways between the north and southbound tracks.  P&R; Lot with bus transfer center both sides of tracks. Transfer point between main line service and Almaden spur.
Served by bus route: 13, 67, 102
POI:  Oakridge Shopping Center is about a block away, Gunderson
H.S. is about a block away.

Historical Note:
This is the location of an old RR Station that used to serve   the farms in the area.  Part of the Lick Spur which was last   used to haul gravel out of the quarries that are now part of   Lake Almaden.

  0.63 miles

Branham , center of tracks, elevator, escalator (up), and P&R; Lot.  Access to station is from the Branham Lane overpass.
Served by bus route: 38
POI:  none

  0.59 miles

Capitol, center of tracks, elevator, escalators (up), P&R; Lot and bus transfer center.  The bus transfer center is in the south parking lot area, farthest from the hills.  Northbound platform is north of Capitol Expwy., southbound platform is south of Capitol Expwy..  There is access to the station from both sides of Capitol Expwy. under Hwy 87.
Served by bus route: 37, 70, 49ers Sports Bus
POI:  Car dealers on Capitol Expwy Auto Mall, CCOC

  1.37 miles

Curtner , center of tracks, elevator, escalator (up), P&R; Lot and bus transfer center.  Access to the station is from under Hwy 87, either at Curtner, or from the P&R; lot.
Served by bus route: 26, 67
POI:  none.

  1.44 miles

Tamien, center of tracks, elevator, escalator (up), P&R; Lot and bus transfer center, also Caltrain Station to east of Hwy 87. Access to the station is from undercrossings at both ends of the station.
Served by bus route: 25, 67, 82
This is the transfer location for Caltrain, leave the platform using the northern stairway, then walk to the right under the freeway to get to the Caltrain Station.
POI:  Tamien Childcare Center

Historical Note:
n the original plans, this station was called Alma, it was   renamed when Caltrain decided to rename the Alma Station to   Tamien to honor the native culture living in the area.  This   was also the southernmost station in the last extension before full service.

  0.70 miles

Virginia , center of tracks, elevator, escalator (up).  Access to the station is from Virginia St., the escalator is on the south side of the street, while the elevator is on the north side.
Served by bus route: NONE
POI:  none

  0.61 miles

Children's Discovery Museum, center of tracks.  This station was added later in the plans at the request of the City of San Jose.  In order to save costs, the station originally planned for Lean was deleted.  This station was formerly known as Technology Center.
Served by bus route: 23, 24, 85
POI:  Children's Discovery Museum, S.J. Center for the
Performing Arts, Guadalupe River Park.

Historical Note:
This station was not in the original plans.  It replaced the station originally planned to be at Lean.

  0.30 miles

Convention Center, center of tracks.
Served by bus route: 23, 24, 85
POI:  San Jose Civic Auditorium, San Jose Martin Luther King Library, San Jose Convention Center, Tech Museum of Innovation

Historical Note:
This was the southernmost station when service was extended into Downtown San Jose in 1988.

  0.32 miles

Paseo de San Antonio, this station is split between First St. and Second St., the Northbound trains stop on First, the Southbound trains on Second.
Served by bus route: 23, 24, 66, 68, 82, 85, 304, 305, Downtown Shuttle, Arena Shuttle
POI:  San Jose State Univ., Downtown San Jose

  0.19 miles

Santa Clara, same set up as Paseo de San Antonio.
Served by bus route: 11, 22, 23, 24, 63, 64, 65, 66, 68, 72, 73, 81, 82, 180, 300, 304, 305, Arena Shuttle
POI:  Downtown San Jose

  0.19 miles

St James, same set up as Paseo de San Antonio.
Served by bus route: 23, 24, 66, 72, 73, 82, 85, 180, 304
POI:  St James Senior Center, Santa Clara County Superior Court (The old courthouse is open again), St James Park

  0.55 miles

Japantown/Ayer, center of tracks.
Served by bus route: 66 (there is no 180 stop in this area)
POI:  Japantown is about 3 blocks east of this station

  0.55 miles

Civic Center, center of tracks.
Served by bus route: 11, 12, 36, 62, 66, 180
POI:  San Jose City Hall, County Office Building, Santa Clara
County Main Jail, National Guard Armory, Santa Clara County
Superior Court, Santa Clara County municipal Court

  0.76 miles

Historical Note:
During the initial part of revenue service, there was a station located on Younger at First St.  This consisted of a  raised portion of sidewalk and a shelter.  This station was deleted when simulated service to Downtown was started and Civic Center station was opened up, late May of 1988.

Gish, split platform.
Served by bus route: 11
POI:  none

  0.66 miles

Metro/Airport, split platform.
Served by bus route: 10, Bussiness Park Shuttle
POI:  San Jose Airport is about 1/2 mile west of this station.

  0.51 miles

Karina Court, split platform.
Served by bus route: 59
POI:  light industrial area

  0.61 miles

Component, split platform.
Served by bus route: 56, 59, McCarthy Shuttle
POI:  Light industrial area

  0.42 miles

Bonaventura, split platform.
Served by bus route: 44
POI:  Santa Clara County Parole Office, S.C.C. D.A. Family Support

Historical Note:
For a while, there was a timepoint at this station.  It was removed before full revenue service started.

  0.55 miles

Orchard, split platform.
Served by bus route: 44, Orchard Shuttle
POI:  Light Industrial Area

  0.59 miles

River Oaks, split platform, P&R; Lot.
Served by bus route: 44, 58, River Oaks Shuttle
POI:  VTA Headquarters, light industrial area, Agnew Hospital is about 1/2 mile  east of this station

  0.55 miles

Tasman, center of tracks.
Served by bus route: 58, 140, 330
POI:  Light Industrial Area

  0.?? miles

Baypointe, triple track platform, Guadalupe trains serve the center track.  This is the new end of the Gudalupe line.
Served by bus route: 33, 58, 74, 140, 330
POI:  Light industrial area

  0.00 miles

The following guadalupe stations have been moved onto the Tasman Line.

Champion Station , platform outside of tracks, both platforms on same side of Champion Ct.
Served by bus route: 140, 330
POI:  light industrial area (Cisco systems)

Historical Note:
A station in this area appeared in a lot of the early maps of the   Guadalupe Corridor.  The station was deleted in a cost savings measure to help pay for the redesign of the southend stations when Measure A was passed and changed 85 & 87 from expressway to freeway.  Original name for this station was Vista Montana.  The City of San Jose and Cisco Systems contributed money to help pay the costs of construction of this station.

  0.72 miles

Lick Mill, split platform.
Served by bus route: 59, 140, 330, Amtrak connection with a 3 block walk
POI:  Light industrial area

  0.74 miles

Historical Note:
On a lot of the early maps of Guadalupe Corridor there was a station planned between Lick Mill and Great America, the name it was given was Agnew.

Great America, center of tracks.
Served by bus route: 59, 140, 330
POI:  Paramount's Great America (they run parking lot shuttles out to the station), Santa Clara Convention Center, 49ers Training Camp

  0.19 miles

Old Ironsides , center of tracks.
Served by bus route: 43, 55, 57, 59, 60, 140, 141, 321, 330, Great America Shuttle, Old Ironsides Shuttle #1, Old Ironsides Shuttle #2
POI:  Light industrial area

General Facts about Guadalupe Corridor: (as originally operated)
Total mileage:      20.1 miles. (32.2 KM).
Speed limit:        55 MPH (88.5 KPH) to 8 MPH (12.88 KPH).
Cars at Station:    All stations can handle 3 car trains.
Capacity car:       67.  The new bike racks eliminated 8 seats.
                    Historic Trolleys seat fewer.
Crush Load:         179-250+, I've seen closer to 300.
Number cars:        50
Historic Trolleys:  6
Trains in service:  15, 14 on the main line, one on the Almaden
                    Spur. Historic Trolley Service adds 1 train.
Normal deployment:  34 cars Peak Hours, 29 cars midday
. When they
                                             are running, only one historic trolley is on the tracks at a time
                                            (1 train/1 car).

All stations have wheelchair lifts for boarding wheelchair passengers, only the first car can be used to carry wheelchairs. Each car has two tiedowns at each end. Historic Trolley service is not accessible to wheelchairs.

Historic Trolleys normally only operate between Civic Center Station and Convention Center Station. Only one of the current trolleys in use can operate outside of this area. Most of the historic trolleys operate with a crew of 2, 1 driver and 1 conductor. The real job of the conductor is to watch the pole and to put it back on the wire in case it comes off.

Historical Note:
When Light Rail was first being built, they would block off all of the cross streets on First Street between Brokaw and Montague in order to do full speed tests of the car, included on these tests were full speed emergency braking tests.

When Tasman Corridor comes on line, the stations North of Tasman will become part of that corridor and Baypointe will be added to this corridor.


Segment Openings:

Younger St. to Old Ironsides           12/11/87        8 Miles
  Began simulated service to Downtown May 23, 1988, Civic Center Station opened, Younger Station Closed.
Downtown to Old Ironsides              06/17/88        10 miles
  Began Simulated service to Tamien July, 1990
Tamien to Old Ironsides                08/17/90        12 miles
  Began simulated full service March 18. 1991
Santa Teresa to Old Ironsides          04/25/91        20 miles
Santa Teresa to Baypointe              12/17/99

In full revenue service April 1991.
  May 3, 1999:  Service between Tasman Station and Old Ironsides Station discontinued for construction of Tasman West.  Current schedule calls for revenue service to Baypointe Station, and Tasman West service to begin on December 20, 1999.  Non-revenue testing scheduled to begin Mid November, 1999.

Current VTA Organization
Light Rail Corridors
Transit Ops.
VTA Overview
Service & Operations Planning

This page was prepared by: Eric Rosenberg 

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