Bakersfield station is an intermodal facility in Bakersfield, California. It is the southern terminus of Amtrak California's San Joaquins route, with Amtrak Thruway buses continuing to Amtrak stations and bus stops throughout Southern California and Nevada. The station opened with a celebration on July 4, 2000. It contains an 8,300-square-foot (770 m2) train station with two platforms and three tracks, as well as a 17-bay bus station.
|Location||601 Truxtun Avenue|
|Owned by||City of Bakersfield|
|Line(s)||BNSF Mojave Subdivision|
|Platforms||1 side platform, 1 island platform|
|Station code||Amtrak: BFD|
|Opened||July 4, 2000|
The original operator for train service on this line was the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe. Their station was located at the intersection of 15th Street and F Street (about 0.9 miles (1.4 km) west). It was constructed in 1899 and demolished in 1972. Named Santa Fe passenger trains served at the station included the San Francisco Chief, and Golden Gate.
Starting in 1974, Amtrak operated out of a temporary station at that site, until this station was constructed. Since 1971, direct service south to Los Angeles has not been permitted due to a ban on passenger trains through the Tehachapi Loop.
Construction of the San Francisco and San Joaquin Valley Railroad reached Bakersfield in 1898, and was completed in 1899. However, they would not construct a train station in the city, because once completed, the railroad was purchased by Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe. It would also obtain trackage rights over Tehachapi Pass from the Southern Pacific Railroad. They constructed the Bakersfield Santa Fe Station in 1899, at the intersection of F Street and 15th Street.
The station occupied two blocks of land, between D Street and F Street. A Harvey House was located on the east side of the station. In 1901, the Bakersfield and Kern Electric Railway was relocated to serve the station. It provided a direct connection between the Bakersfield Santa Fe Station and the Bakersfield Southern Pacific Station (about 2.5 miles east in East Bakersfield). In 1938, Santa Fe began operating intermodal rail service on the San Joaquin Valley line. Trains would travel between Oakland and Bakersfield on the railroad line. At Bakersfield passengers would transfer to one of several bus routes, which departed for destinations in Southern California. As a result, bus bays were constructed at the station.
Service continued until 1971, when Amtrak was formed. Since a rail route along the coast and in the San Joaquin Valley was considered redundant, the San Joaquin Valley route was dropped. In 1972, the train station was demolished by Santa Fe and replaced with freight offices and a parking lot.
However, train service restarted only two years later, in 1974. It was decided to use the intermodal route previously used by Santa Fe, instead of the Tehachapi route used by Southern Pacific. This would pose a problem for Bakersfield. The city would serve as the transfer point between rail and bus, but did not have any facilities for it.
A temporary structure was erected at the new parking lot (part of the previous site occupied by the station) east of the freight offices, to serve as the station. Buses would park wherever space was available. The station was served by only one track. As ridership increased, the station became ineffective at containing all of the passengers. Also, adding more bus routes forced them to park in an adjacent alley. In 1985, the temporary structure was doubled in size in an attempt to keep up with demand.
In the late 1990s, plans were started for the construction of a new, permanent train station. Land at the intersection of Truxtun Avenue and S Street was selected for the site. It would cost $5.1 million, funded by the State of California with Bakersfield as the lead agency. The station would officially open on July 4, 2000, with a demonstration train breaking through a ceremonial barrier. In attendance were the mayor, state senator Jim Costa, and Amtrak officials. Country music star Buck Owens (who lived in Bakersfield) performed at the event.
The Bakersfield station of the California High-Speed Rail system was originally to be co-located with the existing station. However, an alternate alignment with a new station further north was adopted in 2014.
Greyhound Lines moved into Bakersfield station in late 2021, after pulling out of its 60-year-old bus depot in downtown Bakersfield. Greyhound said that the facility was too large for their needs and the property it stood on had been sold in July 2020. Greyhound added two new bus bays west of the Amtrak Thruway bus bays, a covered outdoor waiting area with storage, and a ticket office inside the city-owned station building.
Bakersfield's Amtrak station is a staffed station with a large, enclosed waiting room. Inside, there is both a staffed ticket window and Amtrak's self-service Quik-Trak ticket kiosk. There is seating, a payphone, restrooms, and vending machines. The station also offers checked baggage and Amtrak Express package service. Taxi stands are located to the west and a passenger pick-up and drop-off zone is located directly north of the station building. A free, unattended parking lot is available for passengers.
The station has two tracks and two platforms (one side platform, and one island platform) accessible by passengers. Each platform can hold a six-car train. A third track provides for overnight storage and is not used by passengers. There is also a 15 bay bus station, located north of the tracks (just south of the taxi stand), but only 7 of the bays are currently in use. The bus bays and one platform is sheltered.
Of the California stations served by Amtrak, Bakersfield was the fifth busiest in Fiscal Year 2018 (behind only Los Angeles Union Station, Sacramento Valley, San Diego and Emeryville), boarding or detraining an total of 442,023 passengers. It is also the 25th busiest Amtrak station nationwide, and one of the busiest serving a metro area with fewer than 2 million people.
Bakersfield is the transfer point between San Joaquin trains and Amtrak Thruway buses connecting to Southern California destinations. As many as 6 thruway motorcoaches can connect to a single train. The buses are necessary in part because passenger trains are normally not allowed on the Tehachapi Loop, the only direct rail link between the San Joaquin Valley and the urban core of Southern California.
|Bay||Route||Terminal A||Stops||Terminal B||Connecting Trains|
|1||1A||Bakersfield||non-stop service for train connections||Los Angeles||702, 703, 712, 714, 715, 716, 717|
|4||1B||Glendale, Los Angeles, Long Beach||San Pedro||702, 703, 712, 713, 714, 715, 716, 717|
|6||1C||Santa Clarita, Hollywood Burbank Airport, Van Nuys, UCLA, Westchester, El Segundo||Torrance||702, 703, 712, 713, 714, 715, 716, 717|
|8||19||La Crescenta, Pasadena, Claremont, Ontario, Riverside||San Bernardino||713, 716|
|La Crescenta, Pasadena, Claremont, Ontario, Riverside, San Bernardino, Moreno Valley, Perris, Sun City/Menifee||Hemet||712, 717|
|La Crescenta, Pasadena, Claremont, Ontario, Riverside, San Bernardino, Cabazon, Palm Springs, Palm Desert, La Quinta||Indio||702, 703, 714, 715|
|10||10||Fillmore, Santa Paula, Oxnard, Ventura, Carpinteria||Santa Barbara||702, 703, 713, 714, 715, 716|
|12||12||Tehachapi, Mojave, Lancaster, Palmdale, Littlerock||Victorville||712, 713, 715, 716|
|14||9||Tehachapi, Mojave, Barstow, Primm||Las Vegas||712, 717|
|Late Night/Early Morning Service|
|1A||Bakersfield||Los Angeles, Fullerton||Santa Ana||713|
|Santa Clarita, Hollywood Burbank Airport, Glendale, Los Angeles, Fullerton||701, 704|
|Santa Clarita, Hollywood Burbank Airport, Glendale, Los Angeles, Fullerton, Santa Ana, Irvine, San Juan Capistrano, Oceanside, Solana Beach||San Diego||711, 718|
|1B||Fresno||Hanford, Bakersfield, Santa Clarita (northbound only), Hollywood Burbank Airport (northbound only)||Los Angeles||none|
(round-trip passengers only)
Greyhound Lines service moved here in 2022 after its longtime station on 18th street closed. They operate out of two bus bays west of the Amtrak Thruway bus bays. Greyhound also has a covered outdoor waiting area, and a ticket office inside the station building.
Kern Regional TransitEdit
Kern Regional Transit is the regional transit provider for Kern County. The station is one of two major hubs used within Bakersfield (the other is the Downtown Transit Center primarily used by Golden Empire Transit). Currently five bus routes connect with half of the train routes. They travel to various locations throughout the county, including: Desert Communities, East San Joaquin Valley, Kern River Valley, Mountain Communities, and West Kern. Outside of the county, Route 130 connects to the Santa Clarita Station Metrolink and the McBean Regional Transit Center.
- SMA Rail Consulting (April 2016). "California Passenger Rail Network Schematics" (PDF). California Department of Transportation. p. 11.
- "Amtrak Fact Sheet, Fiscal Year 2019: State of California" (PDF). Amtrak. May 2020. Retrieved March 2, 2022.
- Christopher McFadden (February 11, 2017). "Going Round the Bend with the Tehachapi Loop". Retrieved February 7, 2021.
- Bakersfield, California. The Great American Stations. Accessed: 05-12-2011.
- Bergman, John. The Southern San Joaquin Valley: A Railroad History. Jostens Printing and Publishing Company. Visalia, California: 2009. ISBN 978-0-615-25105-9. Page 124.
- Railroad Transportation Archived 2011-10-02 at the Wayback Machine. Kern County Museum. Accessed: 05-12-2011.
- Valley Views - Bakersfield. trainweb.org. Accessed: 05-23-2011.
- Cox, John (November 5, 2021). "Greyhound prepares to leave 18th Street but its replacement remains unclear". The Bakersfield Californian. Retrieved 2022-03-11.
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- San Joaquin - Connecting Routes Archived 2011-05-23 at the Wayback Machine. Amtrak California. Accessed: 05-23-2011.
- Kern Regional Transit. County of Kern. Accessed: 05-23-2011.
- "Kern Transit | Routes & Schedules".
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