On Tuesday, July 4, 2000 Amtrak dedicated their new Bakersfield, CA
station! This culminated a long term partership project between
Amtrak, the State of California, and the City of Bakersfield. The new
0.9 miles East of the old station. Amtrak started service to
Bakersfield in 1974 utilizing the old station facility.
In the intervening 26 years, this station has become the fifth busiest
(in passenger volume) in California and the twelfth busiest in the
The old station was located next to the BNSF's yard office and
adjacent to the BNSF's freight sorting yard. It was housed in a very
small prefabricated building with a small parking lot and a small bus
transfer area. Overnight train storage was limited to two trainsets.
Lighting was minimal, but adequate.
The new station is large and quite impressive in appearance. Two
large platform tracks are present, with one of these platforms having
a long cover. There are fourteen parking spaces for buses immediately
adjacent to the platforms. The bus facility also has a long cover
over it. There is considerable landscaping in addition to multiple
water fountains and a playground. The new station is very nice in
appearance and is much larger than the old station. The new station
and its adjacent facilities are beautifully lit at night. Three
trainsets can be easily stored overnight.
The Grand Opening Ceremonies began at 10:30 A.M. on Tuesday, July 4,
2000. Bakersfield's Mayor, Robert Price, was Master of Ceremonies.
State Senator Jim Costa represented the State of California. Gil
Mallery, Amtrak West's CEO, represented Amtrak. Cowboy singing legend
Buck Owens performed. A barbershop quartet also performed. A drawing
for free Amtrak trips was held. Amtrak literature and timetables were
handed out. Tours of Amtrak passenger cars and busses were held. The
first passenger train into the station broke a banner. Senator Costa
announced that a sixth round trip San Joaquin train will be added this
fall. This will be a second Bakersfield to Sacramento train.
The photographs show the new station before and after its
opening. Also there are photos of the old station before and after
its closing. They span the time frame from July 1 to July 4, 2000.
TrainWeb wishes to thank Greg and Chuck Isaac for covering the grand
opening of the new Bakersfield Amtrak Station and providing us with
the story and the photos. The photos that Greg and Chuck Isaac provided
to us were of very high-quality and resolution. In order to allow our
visitors to be able to view these photos by downloading them in a
reasonable amount of time, as well as keeping the disk space usage for each
photo within TrainWeb standards, we had to reduce the size of each
photo file to about 15% of the original size. As a result, the photos
that you see online do not have the clarity and brilliance of the
original photos that were sent to us. We apologize for not being able
to provide you with the same original high-quality photos that were
sent to us and hope that you will understand the online constraints
that restricted us from doing so.
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