LA-to-San Francisco Night Train Closer to Reality

A train operator has entered into formal negotiations with Union Pacific to move the project forward with a projected launch date of 2025.

1 minute read

March 27, 2024, 12:00 PM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Amtrak train passing over tall trestle bridge on California coast at Gaviota Beach.

Train passing through Gaviota Beach in central California. | htrnr / Adobe Stock

According to an article by Bill Buchanan in SFGate, Dreamstar Lines of Newport Beach signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Union Pacific, paving the way for the first Los Angeles-to-San Francisco night train since 1983. “Most U.S. travelers abandoned trains for driving or flying decades ago, but Dreamstar believes congested roads and the hassles and environmental cost of air travel create an opening for its service.” 

As Buchanan explains, “Union Pacific owns most of the 470-mile route. To complete the link between San Francisco and Los Angeles, Dreamstar also needs agreements to use tracks owned by regional transit operators Caltrain and Metrolink.”

Union Pacific acknowledged that it “entered into formal negotiations” regarding the line. Currently, the only rail service between the Bay Area and Los Angeles is Amtrak’s daytime Coast Starlight service.

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