BREAKING: SMART Service Set to Begin August 25th

August 17th, 2017

Mike DeWald

(Santa Rosa, CA) – – Sonoma County’s new commuter rail service, SMART, has received the required government approvals needed to provide passenger service.  SMART announced today that service is set to begin in Sonoma and Marin County beginning on August 25th with service from the Sonoma County Airport to San Rafael.  The rail service had been awaiting it’s finally approvals regarding it’s Positive Train Control systems before it could open to the public.  SMART service will be begin at 12:49 and be free on August 25th, fares will be half price through Labor Day September 4th, and full fares will begin on Sept 5th.  SMART Board Chairwoman Deb Fudge said of the approval “This is a red letter day for Marin and Sonoma counties and we couldn’t be more excited to say “All Aboard!””

SMART will host a community grand opening event at 9 a.m. on the 25th  at the Courthouse Square station in downtown Santa Rosa.  Chair of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisor and SMART Boardmember Shirlee Zane shared in the excitement saying “The launch of full SMART service is cause for celebration.  Bringing passenger rail service back to Marin and Sonoma counties is no longer just a dream; it’s our new reality.”  Zane lauded the potential for traffic relief to North Bay roadways “SMART provides a safe, reliable transportation option, and a smart alternative to sitting in traffic every day.  I, for one, am looking forward to a relaxing ride on SMART as I commute to and from my Bay Area meetings.”

The SMART District was established by state legislation in 2002 and funding was approved by voters following the passage of Measure Q in 2008 following a failed attempt to get two-thirds of the vote in 2006.  Chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Commision and SMART Board Member Jake Mackenzie talked about the impact of the longterm effort saying “it’s been 20 years since the impetus to get passenger rail service back into Marin and Sonoma counties, and to finally have that passenger rail established, we can truly say the train will have come to town.”

Stay tuned to KSRO for continuing updates on this breaking story, and a conversation with SMART Chair Deb Fudge on The Drive with Steve Jaxon today at 3:20