San Jose: Transportation

Approaching the City

The Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport, located 10 minutes from downtown, is rated among the 31 busiest airports in the world, handling more than 11 million passengers annually; it is served by 12 airlines with more than 200 daily flights. In 2005 major construction was underway at the airport, with projects including new terminals, a people mover, more parking, runway extensions, and advanced security systems, all slated for completion in phases by 2015. Corporate and private aircraft are accommodated at San Jose Jet Center and Reid-Hillview Airport.

Three interstate highways serve San Jose: I-680 (north-south), which becomes I-280 (east-west); I-880 (north-south); and Highway101 (northeast-southwest).

Amtrak serves the San Jose train depot; rail commuter service to San Francisco is provided by Caltrain. Other intercity rail connections are made via the county bus system that links with BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit), an ultra-modern train system based in San Francisco; a $1 billion transit plan approved in 2000 will fund an eventual BART extension to San Jose. In early 2005, plans were still in the engineering stage for the project.

Traveling in the City

Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority operates a 30-mile-long light rail system out of the downtown Transit Mall, which also provides antique trolleys and county transit buses connecting the city with Bay Area Rapid Transit to East Bay and San Francisco. The light rail system runs from Mountain View through downtown San Jose and ends in south San Jose residential and shopping areas.