Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit

The North Bay’s SMART will be a new kind of commuter rail for Northern California, one that holds promise for similar suburban areas in North America. Diesel Multiple Unit or DMU trains like SMART’s or, better yet, the European-standard lightweight railcars to be used by eBART (and that are used on Sprinter in North San Diego County) might be thought of as “diesel light rail,” a relatively inexpensive way to introduce medium-capacity passenger rail service to existing rights-of-way in corridors with moderate transit demand. SMART will also be one of the most beautiful rail lines in North America, running as it will through the rolling green hills of the North Bay, and it will serve the series of historic downtowns that grew up old around depots on the old Northwestern Pacific Railroad.

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