Beginning Aug. 7, SamTrans will no longer operate FLX shuttle service in the city of San Carlos.
The SamTrans Board of Directors voted unanimously to discontinue the FLX San Carlos service due to low ridership and high operational costs after a public hearing was held Wednesday during the Board’s regular monthly meeting.
Since the launch of the FLX San Carlos service in January 2014, SamTrans has operated four trips in the morning and five trips in the afternoon during weekday peak commute periods. In response to requests from San Carlos residents, SamTrans provided on-demand service during the mid-day that provided pick-up and drop-off services within the City of San Carlos.
In the 27 months since the service launched, daily ridership has averaged between 10-20 passengers, an average of about two passengers per hour.
SamTrans made a commitment to continuously monitor and adjust service following the introduction of the SamTrans Service Plan (SSP) in January 2014. The FLX routes were identified as two-year pilot projects that would be evaluated for effectiveness at the end of that term.
Improvements are underway to improve local service in unserved parts of the City. Starting this August, SamTrans will offer new local bus service in San Carlos to better connect residents with several neighborhoods in the hills to communities bordering downtown San Carlos. The Beverly Terrace, Alder Manor, El Sereno, Howard Park, and Cordes neighborhoods will be served by the new route. Key destinations will include the Caltrain Station, Laurel Street, Big Canyon Park, Crestview Park, Tierra Linda Middle School, and Carlmont High School.
Over the last few months, SamTrans worked with the City of San Carlos staff and community members to identify alternative service that would better meet the needs of the community. Initial improvements to service have been made to help compensate for the loss of the FLX San Carlos service. Those improvements include improving the scheduling on Route 295 to align with school bell times and extending Route 95 to serve the Redwood City Transit Center.
About SamTrans: SamTrans operates 76 routes throughout San Mateo County. Funded in part by a half-cent sales tax, the San Mateo County Transit District also provides administrative support for Caltrain and the San Mateo County Transportation Authority. SamTrans has provided bus service to San Mateo County customers since 1976.