North County Coaster

The Coaster is a small commuter rail service in northern San Diego County operated by the North County Transit District that connects Oceanside to San Diego’s Santa Fe Depot with six intermediate stops. The system primarily operates during peak weekday periods, though there is some weekend and nighttime service as well as special service for San Diego Padres home games.

The Coaster served an average of 5,100 riders each weekday during the third quarter of 2010. It serves a total of 8 stations on about 41 miles of track. The entire route from Oceanside to San Diego Santa Fe Depot takes about 1 hour and 8 minutes.

One-way regular adult fares are zone-based an range from $5 for travel within one zone to $6.50 for travel through all four zones. Riders must present proof-of-payment if asked by a conductor, and tickets can’t be purchased on board.

The Coaster uses GM Electro-Motive F40PHM and F59PHI locomotives and Bombardier Bi-Level Coaches. Most trains run with five or six coaches.

No expansions are being seriously considered at this time. NCTD is planning a new station at University City, and some TransNet tax money has been allocated for track upgrades.

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