Rail Planning Branch


The Rail Planning Branch is responsible for undertaking strategic planning for statewide passenger rail (high-speed, intercity and commuter) and freight rail systems responding to state and federal requirements. The primary vehicle for this planning is the 2018 California State Rail Plan, which establishes a long range vision for prioritizing state investment in rail infrastructure. The Rail Planning Branch also works in cooperation with other transportation agencies to develop network integration plans for high-speed and conventional rail systems, taking into consideration freight issues.

The Rail Planning Branch coordinates activities with other planning functions and exercises to insure that rail planning is well integrated into Caltrans planning functions. This includes coordination with the California Transportation Plan (CTP) and its policy framework for the state transportation system, the Interregional Transportation Strategic Plan (ITSP) that defines the state’s interregional travel corridors, the California Freight Mobility Plan that prioritizes freight projects for funding, the Sustainable Freight Action Plan that coordinates state agency actions to improve the freight network, and regional plans that include rail improvements.

Both passenger and freight rail networks are owned and operated by various rail partners and the Rail Planning Branch strives to foster partnerships with these rail owner/operators to maintain a coordinated and efficient statewide passenger and freight rail system.

Archived Copies of Prior California State Rail Plans