For a high-speed rail, the system really slogs. On a commute from North Berkeley to the SF Financial District, during prime commute hours, it can often be faster to take AC Transit than to take BART. So a bus, which makes more stops, and travels on surface streets and then congested I-80, is faster.
A trip from North Berkeley BART to the Fremont BART station, 34.5 miles by car, 29.7 by BART, is 43 minutes by car, and 51 minutes by BART!!! How does this qualify as a high speed rail? What gives???
I emailed BART a few years ago to ask about the speed. I asked why BART moves so incredibly slowly through the west Oakland area. (I would sit and watch as cars on even surface streets passed the train). She said that there must have been some problem at a station. I replied that not only was there no announcement of any delays, this was the norm on the ride between SF and Oakland. I got further explanation.
I wonder, is the system getting slower, or has it always been this slow? What a bill of goods the citizens of the Bay area bought: the high cost of high-speed-rail for the slow speed of light rail.
Is there anything BART can do to remedy this problem? There are all sorts of plans to help deal with the growing number of commuters; it seems to me that the most efficient thing that could be done is to have the trains go faster so that many more people can be served by exactly the same number of (BART) cars and operators.
thank you for your attention.