Martinez station is an Amtrak passenger train station in Martinez, California, United States. Located at the west end of downtown Martinez, the station has one side platform and one island platform, which serve three of the four tracks of the Union Pacific Railroad Martinez Subdivision It is served by the daily California Zephyr and Coast Starlight long-distance trains, five daily round trips of the San Joaquin corridor service, and fifteen daily round trips (eleven on weekends) of the Capitol Corridor service. Martinez is also served by Amtrak Thruway Motorcoach intercity buses plus County Connection, WestCAT, and Tri-Delta Transit local buses.
A northbound Capitol Corridor train at Martinez in 2019
|Location||601 Marina Vista Avenue, Martinez, California|
|Owned by||City of Martinez|
|Line(s)||UP Martinez Subdivision|
|Platforms||1 side platform, 1 island platform|
|Connections|| Amtrak Thruway|
County Connection: 16, 18, 19, 28, 98X, 99X, 316
Tri Delta Transit: 200
|Opened||September 22, 1877|
|Rebuilt||September 12, 2001|
|Passengers (2015)||363,717 (Amtrak)|
In early 1877, the Central Pacific Railroad (CPRR) began construction of two lines meeting at Martinez. The Northern Railway subsidiary built along the coast from Oakland to Martinez, while the San Pablo-Tulare Railway Company followed an inland route from Martinez to Tracy. A passenger station and freight house were built in Martinez east of Ferry Street, along with an engine house and turntable. The first train from Oakland to Martinez ran on September 22, 1877, with regular scheduled service beginning the next January. In August 1878, the line was completed to Tracy, where it met the First Transcontinental Railroad.
Transcontinental service was rerouted over the new route via Martinez on September 8, 1878. On December 6, 1879, the CPRR opened a new line from Benicia to Fairfield, where it connected with the California Pacific Railroad to Sacramento. A train ferry was operated between Benicia and Port Costa; Martinez was cut off from transcontinental service. The Southern Pacific Railroad (SP) leased the CPRR in 1885. On June 7, 1891, the SP opened its San Ramon Branch from Avon (just east of Martinez) to San Ramon; it was later extended to Pleasanton. The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway opened a line through the south part of Martinez in 1899, with a station at John Strentzel's fruit ranch. The station, later named Muir, was never heavily used for passenger service and was closed around the 1940s.
On November 10, 1930, the SP opened the Benicia-Martinez Railroad Drawbridge east of Martinez, replacing the train ferry and adding Martinez to the Oakland–Sacramento mainline.:74 Passenger service on the San Ramon Branch ended in 1931. The second story on the east end of the station was removed in 1942.:71 Local service between Martinez and Tracy ended in the early 1950s, and between Oakland and Sacramento in 1962.:7 However, Martinez remained a stop on long-distance trains including the Cascade, City of San Francisco, and San Joaquin Daylight.
Amtrak took over most intercity passenger operations in the United States on May 1, 1971. Amtrak did not continue service to the San Joaquin Valley, but Martinez was served by the Seattle–San Diego Coast Daylight/Starlight (later the Coast Starlight) and the Oakland–Chicago City of San Francisco (later the San Francisco Zephyr and California Zephyr). The Oakland–Bakersfield San Joaquin began service on March 5, 1974, with a stop at Martinez. The station was renovated in 1983.
The San Jose–Sacramento Capitols (later Capitol Corridor) began on December 12, 1991.:7 As service increased on the new route, the old Martinez station was inadequate for the increased ridership. In 1994, the city acquired a former rail yard site west of Ferry Street. The first phase of the station project - construction of the parking lot, replacement of the Alhambra Creek railroad bridge, and addition of two tracks through the station - was completed in 1997. The new $31 million station opened on September 22, 2001.:67 The city acquired the vacated old station that year; it was used as a temporary library building, and may be converted into a museum.:73
In 2008, the city acquired an industrial parcel north of the tracks to serve as an additional parking lot. The city originally planned to construct a bridge over the tracks to the new lot and the shoreline park areas, as Ferry Street is frequently blocked by trains, but it proved too costly to construct. The city decided in 2013 to build a less-expensive bridge across Alhambra Creek, linking the lot to Berrellesa Street. That bridge opened in 2016. In 2018, the city began construction on the final part of the station project: a footbridge connecting the station building to the new lot. The 110-foot (34 m) span was lifted into place in January 2019.
- SMA Rail Consulting (April 2016). "California Passenger Rail Network Schematics" (PDF). California Department of Transportation. p. 3.
- "Amtrak Fact Sheet, FY2015, State of California" (PDF). Amtrak. November 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 February 2016. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
- Henderson, Kristin (October 2014). National Register of Historic Places Multiple Property Documentation Form: Historic Resources of Martinez, California (PDF) (Report). pp. 10–12.
- Dotson, Irma M.; Reynolds, Myron (September 18, 1989). "National Register of Historic Places Registration Form: Danville Southern Pacific Railroad Depot". National Park Service.
- Valley and San Francisco Terminal Divisions Employees' Time Table No. 75 (PDF). Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway. June 12, 1938. p. 8.
- Valley Division and San Francisco Terminal Division Employees' Time Table No. 89 (PDF). Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway. June 2, 1946. pp. 6–7.
- Vurek, Matthew Gerald (2016). Images of Modern America: California’s Capitol Corridor. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 9781467124171.
- Solomon, Brian (2005). Southern Pacific Passenger Trains. Voyageur Press. p. 140.
- "Press release announcing the launch of the San Joaquin, 1974". Amtrak. March 5, 1974.
- "Martinez, CA (MTZ)". Great American Stations. Amtrak.
- "Martinez breaks ground on final phase of downtown intermodal transportation facility". Contra Costa Herald. January 9, 2018.
- Richards, Sam (September 19, 2017). "Future of old train station on council agenda in Martinez". East Bay Times.
- White, Lisa P. (February 8, 2013). "Martinez to build a bridge linking Berrellesa Street to the future Amtrak parking lot". Mercury News.
- "Berrellesa Bridge open to traffic". Martinez Tribune. December 16, 2016.
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