San Jose’s $2B Light Rail System Among Least Efficient In Country

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VTA light rail

A VTA light-rail train. (Santa Clara VTA)

SAN JOSE (CBS/AP) — The $2 billion light-rail system built to serve San Jose and some surrounding cities in Silicon Valley is among the least efficient in the country and suffers from low ridership and high operating costs.

The Valley Transportation Authority rail line is celebrating its 25th anniversary this month, and even supporters say it has not lived up to expectations.

Fewer than 1 percent of all Santa Clara County residents ride the trains daily, and taxpayers subsidize 85 percent of the service, the second worst rate in the nation.

The newspaper also says the light rail line costs 30 percent more to operate compared to the U.S. average.

VTA Transportation Planning Manager Kevin Connolly said the line is a work in progress and will ultimately realize its original vision.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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