Caltrain: 25th Avenue Grade Separation Project

25th Grade Separation Project renderingProject Description:

We are committed to improving safety, traffic flow and reducing train noise for our residents. In 1999, we started planning the project that is now known as the 25th Grade Separation Project. 

The $180 million Caltrain project is comprised of funding from the San Mateo County Transportation Authority, California High Speed Rail Authority, California State Department of Transportation (Caltrans), and the City of San Mateo. The City of San Mateo is the sponsoring partner.

The project will raise the train tracks, and slightly lower the road (grade separate), at E. 25th Avenue, and will create new east-west street connections at 28th and 31st avenues. As part of the project's overall improvements, Caltrain will also build a new elevated Hillsdale Station with updated amenities at E. 28th Avenue.

This will improve safety for both motorists and pedestrians, and it will reduce local traffic congestion in San Mateo. Construction began in 2017 with an official groundbreaking. The project is in conformance with the San Mateo Rail Corridor Transit Oriented Development Plan.

Planning for the Hillsdale Station Closure

As part of the Project, Caltrain will need to temporarily close Hillsdale Station for six months in late 2019. During the closure, the downtown San Mateo Station and Hayward Park Station will remain open, and normal Hillsdale train service will move 2.2 miles south to the Belmont Station in neighboring Belmont, Ca. 

In July 2019, Caltrain launched a Virtual Town Hall informing the community of the closure. You can still view the presentation and read the community feedback that was live during the broadcast. 

To help riders during this temporary closure, Samtrans bus service on El Camino Real between Hillsdale and Belmont will be no charge, and Caltrain is enhancing its free shuttles between Belmont and Hillsdale. 

Have you signed up for 25th Grade Separation Project email updates? Click here to add your email.

Why Belmont Station? 

When planning for the station closure, Caltrain examined moving service to Hayward Park Station. Only a few locations between San Francisco to San Jose allow bullet trains to pass safely. Hayward Park Station does not provide an opportunity to let the express trains pass, and added stops there would cause system-wide delays. Thus, Belmont Station was selected as a temporary station while Hillsdale Station is closed for six months. Another factor considered was parking. 

Hillsdale Station has approximately 518 spaces available that are often at 100 percent occupancy. Hayward Park Station has 213 spaces but due to private development are now at approximately 140 available parking spaces. See the 'recent presentations' section below for the last two presentation to our City's leadership, detailing the station decision. 

What's the Latest? 

25th Grade Time-Lapse - July 2019 Opens in new window

In July 2019, the new rail bridge was installed at E. 25th Avenue at Delaware Street. Click here to see a 20-second time-lapse of the overnight work. 

Recent Presentations

Caltrain made its latest project presentation to San Mateo City Council on July 15, 2019. Click here to view the presentation (starts at hour 2:30). On May 8, 2019, Caltrain presented its latest project update to San Mateo's S&I Commission (starts at minute 08:50).

How can you get project updates?

For weekly construction updates and register for the weekly email, visit Caltrain's project website.