The trade-offs in running more BART trains on popular lines

Starting Monday, BART will run trains more frequently on the most popular lines in its system. 

It's part of an effort to bring back riders and meet growing demand for trains evenings and weekends. 

For example: 

  • Yellow line trains will run every 20 min on weekends (instead of every 30 minutes)
  • Yellow line trains will run every 10 min until 9 p.m. weekdays, (instead of every 15 minutes)
  • Trains will run every 20 minutes from SFO (instead of every 30 minutes)

Lisa Morton of Danville said this change will be very helpful. 

She said riding on the trains now are "overwhelmed" and she feels "squished." 

But there is a trade-off.

In order to boost the frequency of yellow line trains, orange line trains from Richmond to San Jose will run less often; every 10 minutes instead of every 7.5. 

And trains on the blue line, from Dublin, will run every 20 minutes all day, instead of every 15 minutes. 

BART's directors say the transit agency is trying to adapt to changing needs and schedules  among its riders.

"We know at this point, lots of workers are not going back to their office five days a week," BART board director Rebecca Saltzman said. "We only have so much potential to grow our ridership for people who aren't necessarily 9 to 5." 

Because of the changes, BART will also run shorter trains – 6- and 8-cars – instead of 10.

That switch has already gone into effect, in the past week or so.

Some riders have noticed and complained about the trains being more crowded.

But BART points out that some of the benefits of shorter trains means it's easier to keep them clean.

And it's easier for police to patrol those shorter trains and respond quickly to any problems.