Paul Avenue station

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Paul Avenue
Paul Avenue station, July 2005.jpg
Paul Avenue station in July 2005
Location 1 Gould Street
San Francisco, California[1]
Coordinates 37°43′24″N 122°23′49″W / 37.72333°N 122.39694°W / 37.72333; -122.39694Coordinates: 37°43′24″N 122°23′49″W / 37.72333°N 122.39694°W / 37.72333; -122.39694
Owned by Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board
Line(s) Peninsula Subdivision[2]
Platforms 2 side platforms (now demolished)
Other information
Fare zone Fare Zone 1
Closed August 1, 2005
Passengers (2005[3]) 1 (daily average)
Former service
Preceding station   Caltrain roundel.svg Caltrain   Following station
toward Tamien
Gilroy during peak hours

Paul Avenue was a Caltrain station located in the Bayview neighborhood of San Francisco, California. The lightly-used station was closed on August 1, 2005, and the platform and shelter were removed in 2009. A replacement station to the north has been proposed.


Soon after Caltrans took over operation of the Peninsula Commute service, a study was published in 1982 recommending that Paul Avenue be closed.[4] Service was reduced after the 1982 study.[5]:27–28 A 1987 ridership survey showed that on a typical weekday, 37 northbound passengers disembarked at Paul, 1 northbound passenger embarked, and 43 southbound passengers disembarked.[5]:15 In the late 1990s, Caltrain staff recommended that the station be closed due to low ridership - it was located away from residential and commercial areas, and riders found it unsafe.[6][7] It was to require $3.65 million to stabilize a crumbling embankment, and modernizing the station was to have cost significantly more. However, the Caltrain board voted in February 1999 to keep the station open due to pressure from the neighborhood and from mayor Willie Brown.[7]

The former station site in 2012

After the Caltrain Express project was completed in 2004, only four weekday trains stopped at Paul Avenue: one northbound and one southbound local in the early morning, and one northbound and one southbound local in the evening.[8] Before its closure in 2005, service remained at four weekday local trains, and no service on weekends.[9]

The Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board, the governing body of Caltrain, voted in April 2005 to suspend service to Paul Avenue effective August 1, 2005.[10][11] Weekday service was also suspended at Broadway and Atherton in order to add twelve more Baby Bullet trains to help close a funding gap, because the limited-stop express trains had typically operated at capacity and generated higher revenues than locals since their introduction in 2004.[10][11][12]

The abandoned station was soon covered with trash and graffiti. Caltrain cleaned up the larger debris in March 2005. That July, the platforms and shelter were removed, the graffiti painted over, and a fence installed to deter access.[13][14]

Oakdale station proposal[edit]

A train passing the proposed station site

When Caltrain was still being operated by Caltrans, a report was published in 1988 from a study to evaluate the feasibility of replacing Paul Avenue with a new station to the north at either Williams Avenue, Palou Avenue, or Evans Avenue. The report was prepared in conjunction with the effort to create a home port for USS Missouri (BB-63) in San Francisco at the Hunters Point Shipyard, and concluded that with the completion of the Downtown Rail Extension, daily ridership could increase to 2,400. However, without the Downtown Extension, ridership would be limited to less than 100. The preferred site was at Evans Avenue.[5]

A 2005 feasibility study proposed a new station at Oakdale Avenue (37°44′17″N 122°23′41″W / 37.738°N 122.3948°W / 37.738; -122.3948) next to the City College of San Francisco Southeast Campus in Bayview, 1.0 mile (1.6 km) north of Paul Avenue. A follow-up study in 2014 predicted daily ridership of around 2,350.[6]


  1. ^ "Caltrain Stations". Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. 2002. Archived from the original on August 22, 2005. 
  2. ^ SMA Rail Consulting (April 2016). "California Passenger Rail NETWORK SCHEMATICS" (PDF). California Department of Transportation. p. 13. 
  3. ^ "Caltrain Weekday Station Passenger Boardings - 1992 & 1995 through 2007". Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. Archived from the original on October 7, 2007. 
  4. ^ Barton-Aschman Associates (198). Caltrans commuter rail station location and improvement study (Report). California Department of Transportation. 
  5. ^ a b c Evaluation of the Feasibility of Constructing a Peninsula Commute Service (CalTrain) Station in the South Bayshore/Hunters Point Area of San Francisco and of Closing the Paul Street Station (PDF) (Report). California Department of Transportation, District 4: Public Transportation Branch. Fall 1988. 
  6. ^ a b "Fact Sheet: Caltrain Station at Oakdale Avenue" (PDF). San Francisco County Transportation Authority. March 2014. 
  7. ^ a b Hendricks, Tyche (February 5, 1999). "Caltrain board to keep Paul Avenue station open". San Francisco Chronicle. 
  8. ^ "Timetable" (PDF). Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. June 5, 2004. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 9, 2004. 
  9. ^ "Timetable" (PDF). Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. May 2, 2005. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 24, 2005. 
  10. ^ a b "Caltrain OK's Fare Increase, Service Revamp to Close Deficit" (Press release). Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. April 25, 2005. Archived from the original on May 7, 2005. 
  11. ^ a b "Caltrain to Continue Weekend Service for Broadway and Atherton" (Press release). Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. May 23, 2005. Archived from the original on May 26, 2005. 
  12. ^ "Caltrain Adding Two More Bullet Trains to Help Financial Crisis" (Press release). Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board. April 13, 2005. Archived from the original on May 7, 2005. 
  13. ^ Curiel, Jonathan (April 2, 2009). "San Francisco: Paul Avenue Station clean up". San Francisco Examiner. 
  14. ^ Curiel, Jonathan (July 7, 2009). "S.F.: Paul Avenue Caltrain Station cleaned up". San Francisco Examiner. 

External links[edit]