With the opening of the East Dublin/Pleasanton BART station in May, 1997, it became easier than ever to commute to Hacienda from other locations in the Bay Area. BART's opening also gave Hacienda expanded service to the Oakland International Airport, the Alameda County Colisseum, and other conveniences.
Hacienda's improved transit didn't stop with BART, however. With October's launch of the Altamont Commuter Express rail service from Stockton and Manteca (see story, page 1) and the upcoming debut of WHEELS buses serving the I-680 corridor from Concord to Hacienda, the park will see an unprecedented level of transit service. It's never been a better time to be a Hacienda commuter.
Besides ACE, the biggest new story in Hacienda commuting is the upcoming launch of the I-680 Express Bus. Free to Hacienda employees, the service will cover a route beginning in Concord, with stops in Pleasant Hill and Walnut Creek, en route to the park.
Because the service will be operated by WHEELS, Hacienda employees will be able to use their free Flash Passes, available from the Hacienda Owners Association, instead of paying for tickets. The service is scheduled to begin before the year ends.
Also new on the transit horizon is the MAX Commuter Express, a bus service which links Modesto with the Hacienda BART station. This bus leaves Modesto's Vintage Faire Mall Park and Ride lot at 5:40 a.m. and arrives in Pleasanton at 6:50. In the evening, the bus departs BART at 6:15 p.m. and arrives in Modesto about 7:15.
For more details on Modesto's MAX Commuter Express, call (209) 571-5590.
The addition of these services means that there are transit solutions serving Hacienda from virtually every city in a large radius around the park.
Pleasanton, Livermore, and Dublin. WHEELS (925/455-7555) is the answer for you, with their routes which criss-cross the area. Pleasanton residents can choose between WHEELS routes 1, 4, 5, 7, 8 or 10, while Livermore and Dublin citizens will make use of routes 10 and 3, respectively, which stop at the BART station in the park. From there, you can take the one of several WHEELS buses which cover the park.
Central Valley, including Tracy, Manteca, Modesto, and Stockton. Besides the two new services, ACE and MAX, SMART (209/943-1111) offers service from Tracy, Manteca, and Stockton.
East Bay. Besides the areas which will be served by the upcoming WHEELS Express Bus serving Concord, Pleasnt Hill, and Walnut Creek, BART (925/676-BART) is the best choice from these cities.
San Francisco. BART is the top choice from San Francisco as well.
San Jose, Santa Clara County. VTA (408/321-2300) Express Route 180 provides daily service connecting CalTrain, downtown San Jose, and Milpitas with BART in Fremont. From there, take BART and transfer at Bay Fair to get to Hacienda.
Outlying Areas. Many places beyond BART's service route offer local transit service to a nearby BART station. Vallejo residents, for instance, can take a Vallejo Transit bus to Richmond BART and board the system there. Check with your local transit agency to see if a similar service is offered in your area.
The Bay Area provides a wealth of transit information resources.
One of the best and newest is TravInfo, billed as "the nerve center of every data source for transportation information in the Bay Area." While that sounds like it could be an overstatement, it's notplus, TravInfo offers it all for free over the phone at 817-1717 (a number good from anywhere in the Bay Area).
- connections to 24 transit agencies, as well as information on any major transit problems or delays;
- real-time information on traffic conditions, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week;
- highway construction schedules, including information on hours, lane closures, and more;
- car and van pool information; and
- Park and Ride, bicycle, and paratransit information.
Also worth mentioning is www.transitinfo.org, a comprehensive site with links to route and schedule information for most Bay Area transit systems.
The Hacienda web site contains links to many great transit information sources as well, including web sites for AC Transit and County Connection. Access this page at http://www.hacienda.org/getting.html.
Free WHEELS Flash Passes are available from the Hacienda Owners Association by calling (925) 734-6551 or by ordering of the Association's web site.
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