Sonoma County Airport rail service begins operations this Friday

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USA: The Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) District will begin full passenger train service on Friday 25th August.

SMART is the San Francisco Bay Area’s newest transportation option for travel, offering passenger rail service in Sonoma and Marin counties. SMART’s initial 43 miles of rail corridor includes 10 stations, from the Sonoma County Airport to Downtown San Rafael. Future extensions include: Larkspur, which is scheduled to be completed in 2019; Windsor; Healdsburg; and Cloverdale. The full project will provide 70 miles of passenger rail service, connecting SMART passengers with jobs, education centers, retail hubs and housing along the Sonoma-Marin corridor, and a bicycle-pedestrian pathway.

“We are proud to say that we are ready to roll,” said SMART Board of Directors Chairwoman Debora Fudge. “This is the result of years of hard work from SMART’s staff, its team of contractors and consultants, and Federal Railroad Administration Regional Administrator James Jordan and his team. Successfully opening a new transit system is a major accomplishment—and we will remember this day for generations to come.”

SMART train service will be free of charge on opening day, afterwards fares for everyone will be 50 percent off the regular price through Labor Day, 4th of September 2017. Regular fares will be in place on 5th of September. Under SMART’s fare structure, commuters can purchase 31-day passes at significant discounts. Seniors, youth and passengers with disabilities also receive 50 percent off fares. SMART uses Clipper® cards, the same payment system used by other Bay Area transit providers, for a seamless trip. SMART will run 34 trips each weekday, and 10 trips on weekends.

“This is truly historic. We want to thank the public for their support, and for providing the North Bay with a state-of-the-art transportation system. This system will bring relief to commuters stuck on Highway 101 and provide a stress-free way to travel. It will also provide a major economic boost for both Marin and Sonoma counties,” said SMART Board Vice Chairwoman Kathrin Sears.

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