Richmond, CA
Richmond station entrance in April 2018
Location1700 Nevin Avenue, Richmond, California
Coordinates37°56′13″N 122°21′11″W / 37.936811°N 122.353095°W / 37.936811; -122.353095Coordinates: 37°56′13″N 122°21′11″W / 37.936811°N 122.353095°W / 37.936811; -122.353095
Owned byUnion Pacific Railroad (Amtrak station)[1]
Line(s)UP Martinez Subdivision[2]
Platforms1 island platform (Amtrak)
1 island platform (BART)
Tracks3 (Amtrak)
2 (BART)
ConnectionsBus transport AC Transit: 70, 71, 72M, 74, 76, 376, 607, 667, 668, 675, 684, 800
Bus transport City of Richmond: BART/Civic Center Shuttle
Bus transport Kaiser Richmond Shuttle
Bus transport Flixbus
Parking624 spaces
Bicycle facilitiesTwo lockers
Disabled accessYes
Other information
Station codeRIC (Amtrak)
OpenedJanuary 29, 1973 (BART)[3]
October 30, 1977 (Amtrak)
RebuiltOctober 18, 2007[1]
20204,554 (weekday average)[4] (BART)
2018289,928[5][6]Decrease 0.86% (Amtrak)
Rank16th in California[5] (Amtrak)
Preceding station BSicon LOGO Amtrak2.svg Amtrak Following station
California Zephyr Martinez
toward Chicago
toward San Jose
Capitol Corridor Martinez
toward Auburn
Emeryville San Joaquins Martinez
     Coast Starlight does not stop here
Preceding station Bart compact logo.svg Bay Area Rapid Transit Following station
El Cerrito del Norte Richmond–Millbrae+SFO line Terminus
El Cerrito del Norte Berryessa/​North San José–Richmond line
Former services
Preceding station BSicon LOGO Amtrak2.svg Amtrak Following station
Emeryville Coast Starlight
Until 1996, then 2013
toward Seattle
Oakland-16th Street Spirit of California
toward Sacramento
Preceding station Southern Pacific Railroad Following station
Stege Overland Route San Pablo
toward Ogden
Shasta Route San Pablo
toward Portland

The Richmond Transit Center is a Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) and Amtrak station located in Richmond, California. Richmond is the north terminus of BART service on the Berryessa/​North San José–Richmond line and Richmond–Millbrae+SFO line; it is a stop for Amtrak's Capitol Corridor, San Joaquin, and California Zephyr routes. It is one of two transfer points between BART and Amtrak, along with Oakland Coliseum station.

The Southern Pacific-controlled Northern Railway opened through what is now Richmond in 1878, but a station was not established until the arrival of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway in 1900. The station was closed upon the formation of Amtrak in 1971. Two years later, Richmond became one of the termini of the initial BART system. Amtrak service began in 1978, with a shelter constructed in 1984. A new Amtrak platform was built in 2001, followed by a renovation of the whole station completed in 2007.


Southern Pacific and Santa Fe railroads

The former ATSF station in Richmond, photographed shortly before it was demolished in the 1990s
The former ATSF station in Richmond, photographed shortly before it was demolished in the 1990s

The Southern Pacific-controlled Northern Railway opened through the then-uninhabited swamplands near Point Richmond on January 8, 1878.[7] A stop was soon established at San Pablo, north of what is now Richmond.[8][9] Passenger service to Richmond started around 1900 when the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway (AT&SF) made Port Richmond the west terminus of its transcontinental mainline, where passengers could board ferries to San Francisco.[1] By 1910, the rapidly growing town of Richmond had four train stations: the Southern Pacific (SP) stopped in downtown Richmond near Macdonald Avenue and at Stege south of Potrero Avenue; the AT&SF station was at the west end of Macdonald Avenue.[10]

Even as intercity rail service began to decline, Richmond was served by SP trains on the Shasta Route, Overland Route, and Central Valley routes, plus AT&SF service to the Central Valley.[11] AT&SF service ended in 1968 when the Golden Gate was discontinued. SP service to Richmond on the San Joaquin Daylight continued until May 1, 1971, when Amtrak took over intercity passenger service.[1]


The BART station in 1976
The BART station in 1976

As early as 1957, Richmond was identified as a likely terminus for a line of a proposed regional rapid transit system.[12]: 42  The system was approved by voters in November 1962.[3] The station was originally to be located at 6th and MacDonald west of downtown, but this was changed to 16th and Nevin (along the SP line) to allow construction of a storage yard north of the station and permit future extension. After tension between the Bay Area Rapid Transit District and the city, an agreement to use the latter site was reached in May 1967.[12]: 106  BART service to Richmond began on January 29, 1973; it has remained a terminus since.[3] An extension to Crockett was considered in 1991 but not pursued.[3]

A "rather disquieting" mosaic relief by William Mitchell, made of seashells and fiberglass, is located near the BART faregates.[13]

Intermodal station

San Francisco Zephyr at the station in 1980
San Francisco Zephyr at the station in 1980
Capitol Corridor train at the station in 2018, with the former shelter at right
Capitol Corridor train at the station in 2018, with the former shelter at right

Unlike other large cities, the Bay Area did not have a convenient transfer location between Amtrak intercity service and local rapid transit; Oakland Central Station was not located near a BART station. The introduction of the San Joaquin service in 1974 added a third round trip to the SP mainline north of Oakland.

A $667,000 Amtrak station adjacent to the BART station opened for use by the San Joaquin plus the long-distance San Francisco Zephyr and Coast Starlight on October 30, 1977. It included two 18-car-long platforms, with stairs and an elevator from a small station building to the under-track passage.[14][15]

Service gradually expanded; a second San Joaquin was added in 1980, and the Capitols service began in 1991.[16] The Coast Starlight ceased to stop at Richmond in April 1996, followed by the California Zephyr (successor to the San Francisco Zephyr) in October 1998.[17]

The Amtrak station building was closed on December 1, 1997, though trains continued to stop.[18] On April 12, 2000, BART and the city broke ground on a "transit village", a large mixed-use transit-oriented development adjacent to the station.[3] In July 2001, the aging Amtrak facility was replaced with a modern island platform with better access to the BART pedestrian tunnel. The $1.9 million project, funded by the state, was intended to improve the station as preparation for the transit village.[17][19] The developer for the transit village — which included an 800-space garage for BART — was chosen in 2002.[3]

A $6.4 million renovation of the station was undergone as part of the transit village project. An "industrial post-modern" circular canopy was built over the station entrance. The station was officially named the Richmond Transit Center at a dedication ceremony on October 18, 2007.[1] A BART ticket window opened at the station in August 2008, joining seven other major stations in the system.[20]

The two intercity trains began stopping at Richmond again on November 8, 2010. However, the Coast Starlight stop was again discontinued on January 14, 2013 because the train was scheduled to arrive at night — if it was several hours late, passengers would be unable to exit through the locked BART tunnel.[17] In 2018, BART and CCJPA installed a "courtesy light" on the Amtrak platform, which will instruct eastbound Capitol Corridor trains to hold for two minutes if a BART train is arriving to allow passengers to make their connection.[21]

Station layout

Track and platform layout
to Richmond Yards

The BART station — a single island platform with two tracks — is located on the east side of the station complex. The Amtrak station — an island platform served by two of the three tracks of the Union Pacific Railroad Martinez Subdivision — is located to its west.[2] An under-track pedestrian tunnel connects the two platforms with entrances on both sides of the tracks. The east side has a BART parking lot; the transit village, bus bays, and parking garage are located near the large canopy on the west side.[22]

Bus connections

Busway and drop-off area at the station
Busway and drop-off area at the station

Although Richmond is a terminal station for BART, most connecting regional bus services instead run to El Cerrito del Norte station, which is much closer to I-80. Richmond is served by several local bus services:[22]

A Golden Gate Transit route over the Richmond–San Rafael Bridge connecting Richmond to the agency's main service area in North Bay ran until 2015, when it was combined with a route that terminates at El Cerrito del Norte station.[23]

Richmond station is also served by Flixbus intercity buses.[22]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e "Richmond, CA (RIC)". Great American Stations. Amtrak. Retrieved November 24, 2017.
  2. ^ a b SMA Rail Consulting (April 2016). "California Passenger Rail Network Schematics" (PDF). California Department of Transportation. p. 3.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "BART Chronology January 1947 – March 2009" (PDF). San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District. March 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 13, 2013.
  4. ^ "Monthly Ridership Reports". San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District. February 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Amtrak Fact Sheet, Fiscal Year 2018, State of California" (PDF). Amtrak Government Affairs. June 2019. Retrieved June 3, 2020.
  6. ^ "Amtrak Fact Sheet, Fiscal Year 2017, State of California" (PDF). Amtrak Government Affairs. November 2017. Retrieved June 3, 2020.
  7. ^ Board of Railroad Commissioners of the State of California (1889). Annual Report of the Board of Railroad Commissioners of the State of California. p. 10 – via Internet Archive.
  8. ^ "Map of California and Nevada". A.L. Bancroft & Co. 1882 – via David Rumsey Historical Map Collection.
  9. ^ "(California and Nevada)". Rand McNally and Company. 1879 – via David Rumsey Historical Map Collection.
  10. ^ New Richmond Land Company (1910). "Map of Richmond, California". Bolte & Braden Company – via David Rumsey Map Collection.
  11. ^ The Friendly Southern Pacific Time Tables. Southern Pacific Railroad. January 15, 1954 – via Wikimedia Commons.
  12. ^ a b Healy, Michael C. (2016). BART: The Dramatic History of the Bay Area Rapid Transit System. Heyday. pp. 42, 106. ISBN 9781597143707.
  13. ^ Weinstein, Dave. "How BART got ART". CA-Modern. Eichler Network. p. 2.
  14. ^ "Intermodal Passenger Station Dedicated At Richmond, California". Amtrak News. Vol. 4 no. 21. Amtrak. November 15, 1977. p. 3.
  15. ^ "New station will permit Amtrak tie to BART". Modesto Bee. October 26, 1977. p. 32 – via open access
  16. ^ "'San Joaquin' trains catching on". Merced Sun-Star. July 30, 1982. Archived from the original on January 24, 2013.
  17. ^ a b c Cox, Jeremiah (2016). "Richmond, CA". The Subway Nut.
  18. ^ Vurek, Matthew Gerald (2016). California’s Capitol Corridor. Arcadia Publishing. p. 53. ISBN 9781467124171.
  19. ^ Cabanatuan, Michael (July 20, 2001). "New station eases passengers from BART to Amtrak / Covered platform in Richmond is secure and comfortable". San Francisco Chronicle.
  20. ^ "Ticket Exchange Window Opens at Richmond BART Station" (Press release). San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District. August 4, 2008.
  21. ^ "Capitol Corridor and BART unveil "courtesy light" at Richmond for easier transfer" (Press release). San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District. January 31, 2018.
  22. ^ a b c "Transit Stops: Richmond Station" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Commission. March 11, 2019. Retrieved April 12, 2020.
  23. ^ "GGT Routes 40 & 42 Merging - Service to Richmond BART Station Discontinued" (Press release). Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District. November 10, 2015.