Muni upgrade: 1st of 218 new trains rolls onto tracks

Launch of Service with New LRV Dedication and Ribbon Cutting | November 17, 2017

SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) A new Muni train rolled onto the tracks this afternoon in San Francisco as the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency adds to and eventually replaces all of its trains, SFMTA officials said.

Car No. 2006 took its first fair-paying passengers down the N-Judah line around noon.

"San Francisco, your commute just got a sleek upgrade," San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee said on Twitter.

The train's first fare-paying passenger was greeted to a lot of applause and seemed pleasantly surprised, according to SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose. 

The next new train is expected to debut on Muni tracks next month and one to two new trains are expected every week after that, Rose said.

For now, the new car No. 2006 will be traveling on different lines depending on the day.

Agency officials were planning to roll out 24 new trains by the end of 2018, but they are ahead of schedule and expect to have 68 new trains in service in the same time period. The 68 trains will expand the fleet to 218 and then additional new trains will replace the existing fleet.

Agency officials plan to have the entire fleet replaced by 2028.

Rose said riders today commented on how the new train looks and how quiet it was.

He said passengers also appreciated the train's larger signs, which are lit by LEDs and provide more information in a clearer way. The signs show the train's next destination and final destination.

Agency officials said there are far fewer parts in the new trains, which should reduce the number of malfunctions and therefore train delays. 

The trains are also designed with wider aisles, leaning pads, space for strollers and pull-down seats.

The new train commemorates the late Larry Martin, a Muni employee and former president of the Transport Workers Union Local 250-A, who died last month. He started his career with Muni in 1966.

Martin was also a former president of the Recreation and Park Commission and a member of the Human Rights Commission, according to Muni officials.

A plaque was unveiled today on the new train in Martin's honor.