Merced Intermodal Track Connection (MITC) Project
The MITC Project includes a new track connection from the BNSF Railway corridor to the proposed rail hub, in addition to a new platform that will allow for a cross platform transfer between the San Joaquins and High-Speed Rail (HSR). The Project also includes a layover and maintenance facility and expansion of this facility to support both the San Joaquin and ACE services. The San Joaquin Joint Powers Authority (SJJPA) would terminate the San Joaquins at the rail hub station in Merced and eliminate service between Merced and Bakersfield. Passenger rail service between Merced and Bakersfield would be replaced by California High-Speed Rail Authority’s (CHSRA) Merced-Bakersfield Early Operating Segment (EOS), which would provide faster, more reliable, and more frequent service than the San Joaquins currently provides. The MITC Project is critical for integrating the San Joaquins service with CHSRA’s Merced-Bakersfield EOS.
Benefits of MITC
- Establishes a seamless connection between San Joaquins Service and CHSRA’s Merced-Bakersfield EOS service in Merced
- Multimodal Connection between ACE, San Joaquins, and High-Speed Rail
- Provides local connections through the nearby Merced Transit Center
- Critical connector between the Northern California region and the San Joaquin Valley to Bakersfield until Phase 2 of High-Speed Rail is implemented
- New transportation alternatives to automobile use which could reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT) and greenhouse gases (GHG) and improve air quality
Additional Information and Project Documents
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The Project is located entirely within Merced County. A portion of the Project is located within the city limits of the City of Merced. The new track for the MITC Project would run from the BNSF Corridor just north of where it crosses Snelling Highway (SR 59) to the north, to a station platform at the proposed rail hub station located between R Street and O Street in downtown Merced to the south.
The Project also includes a layover and maintenance facility and expansion of this facility to support both the San Joaquin and ACE services.
Work Completed to Date
SJJPA completed a Project Study Report Equivalent to identify the project scope, schedule, and estimated cost of the project in March 2022. The next phase of the project will include an environmental review through the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
SJJPA manages the San Joaquins rail service and is expected to be the Operating Agency for CHSRA’s Merced-Bakersfield EOS. SJJPA and CHSRA will partner to implement the improvements needed for the Merced Intermodal Hub. SJJPA is the lead agency for MITC working in partnership with CHSRA, California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA), Caltrans, Merced County Association of Governments (MCAG) and the City of Merced.