California Avenue station

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California Avenue
Commuter rail
California Avenue train station, California, USA 2007.jpg
Station building
Location 101 California Avenue
Palo Alto, California, United States
Coordinates 37°25′44″N 122°08′29″W / 37.42889°N 122.14139°W / 37.42889; -122.14139Coordinates: 37°25′44″N 122°08′29″W / 37.42889°N 122.14139°W / 37.42889; -122.14139
Owned by Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board
  Local service
  Limited-stop service
Platforms 2 side platforms
Tracks 2
Connections Bus transport VTA: 89
Other information
Fare zone Fare Zone 3
Rebuilt 1984
Passengers (2017) 1668 per weekday[1]Increase 2.5%
Preceding station   Caltrain logo.svg Caltrain   Following station
Local service
toward Tamien
Gilroy during peak hours
(game days only)
Limited-stop service
toward Tamien
Gilroy during peak hours
Baby Bullet

California Avenue is a Caltrain station near milepost 31.7 in Palo Alto, California. It stops at the historical town center of Mayfield, which was annexed by the town of Palo Alto in 1925, the current structure was built in 1983 at the same time as the nearby Palo Alto Central condominium complex, replacing a shelter a few hundred feet to the south.

Platforms and tracks[edit]

Northbound  Local service toward San Francisco (Stanford or Palo Alto)
 Limited-stop service toward San Francisco (Palo Alto)
 Baby Bullet No stops
Southbound  Local service toward Gilroy (San Antonio)
 Limited-stop service toward Tamien, Gilroy during peak hours (San Antonio)
 Baby Bullet toward Tamien (Sunnyvale)

2008 Improvements[edit]

In 2008 Caltrain completed construction of a new underground passage and other improvements to the Palo Alto and California Avenue stations. A new northbound platform on the east side of the tracks was added,[2] the improvements at the California Avenue station improved safety by replacing the at-grade pedestrian crossing with a pedestrian underpass. The center boarding platform was replaced with outside boarding platforms. A fence between the tracks helps keep passengers off the tracks. A ticket vending machine is located at the entrance to the pedestrian underpass so that people can buy or validate their tickets before going to the northbound platform. New shelters for passengers needing assistance are located at the northern end of the platforms, next to the manual wheelchair lifts, the shelters have been modified to accommodate wheelchairs.

Service and Ridership[edit]

The California Avenue station is ranked 12th in weekday riders as of 2015 based on the 2015 Caltrain Ridership Counts Publication.[3] Ridership has been recorded at an average of 1,553 weekday riders, or 2.67% of total weekday riders for the line (this is an increase since 2011 when it was 895 weekday riders). California Ave. Station is served by few trains compared to those of similar ridership levels. Starting April 2017, California Ave will be served by Baby Bullet Express trains in the PM peak.

Hold-out rule[edit]

A hold-out rule used to exist at this station, where only one train could enter at a time, the new outside-boarding platforms and pedestrian under-crossing eliminated the need for the hold-out rule.


  1. ^ Caltrain. "2017 Annual Count Key Findings Report" (PDF). Retrieved 2018-01-29. 
  2. ^ Caltrain to Open New Boarding Platform at California Avenue Station (Caltrain News: November 19, 2008)
  3. ^ Caltrain. "February 2015 Caltrain Annual Passenger Counts" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-07-11. The Survey takes place in February of each year.

External links[edit]