You know those "baby bullet" trains Caltrains implemented that everybody loves and increased ridership? Not everyone is feeling the love. See, the express trains have been so popular that more people are riding them, which means that more and more trains have been added to the service. Which is great if you use one of the stations included on the express line but not so great if you're not. As a result, ridership is dwindling at those stations.
So what, right? Well, dwindling ridership at those stations isn't good and not in a "Guardianistas" kind of way. It's just that if people aren't going to those stations, what are those people who used to ride those trains go? Are they going to other stations or hopping in cars? The problem is an even bigger deal when you consider that transit-oriented development is the new hotness. Lack of riders means lack of development and lack of development means lack of tax revenues, which means lack of everything. To try and figure out a way around it, officials in cities in the neglected stations have bounded together to organize a group called the "Coalition to Expand Train Service" to lobby for more service to their stations.
We have to say that while we love the idea of baby bullet trains, our limited experience in using Caltrains lately turned us off on a lot of it. We missed our stop (took the wrong express train) and got off at the next stop we could so we could get on a train going the other way. It took us about half-an-hour to get one as it neither the stop we wanted to get off of nor the stop we did get off was fully serviced by Caltrains. All told, missing the stop cost us an hour out of our lives. Not that we really had anything else to do then, but still we were not amused.
Oh, and you know, of course, that Caltrains is thinking of raising fares again?