Transportation in San Diego
Transportation in San Diego consists of a variety of air, road, sea, and public transportation options.
San Diego is served by the trolley, bus, Coaster, and Amtrak. The trolley primarily serves downtown and surrounding urban communities, Mission Valley, east county, the coastal south bay, and the international border. A planned Mid-Coast line will operate from Old Town to University City along the 5 Freeway. There are also plans for a Silver Line to expand trolley service downtown. A historical timeline of the development of public transportation in San Diego (dating back to 1886) is available on the Metropolitan Transit System's website
The Amtrak and Coaster trains currently run along the coastline and connect San Diego with Los Angeles, Orange County, San Bernardino, Riverside, and Ventura via Metrolink. There are two Amtrak stations in San Diego, in Old Town and Downtown.
The bus is available along almost all major routes; however, a large number of bus stops are concentrated in central San Diego. Typical wait times vary from 15 to 60 minutes, depending on the location and route . Trolleys arrive at each station every 7 to 30 minutes (depending on time of day and which trolley line is used). Ferries are also available every half hour crossing San Diego Bay to Coronado.
San Diego's roadway system provides an extensive network of routes for travel by bicycle. The dry and mild climate of San Diego makes cycling a convenient and pleasant year-round option. At the same time, the city's hilly, canyoned terrain and significantly long average trip distances—brought about by strict low-density zoning laws—somewhat restrict cycling for utilitarian purposes. Older and denser neighborhoods around the downtown tend to be friendlier to utility cycling. This is partly because of the grid street patterns now absent in newer developments farther from the urban core, where suburban style arterial roads are much more common. As a result, a vast majority of cycling-related activities are recreational. The city has some segregated cycle facilities, particularly in newer developments although the majority of road facilities specifically for bicycles are painted on regular roadways. In 2006, San Diego was rated as the best city for cycling for U.S. cities with a population over 1 million.
San Diego International Airport, also known as Lindbergh International Airport or Lindbergh Field, is the primary commercial airport serving San Diego. It is the busiest single-runway airport in the United States, and is the second busiest single-runway airport in the world, only behind London Gatwick. It serves over 18 million passengers every year, and is located on San Diego Bay three miles (4.8 km) from downtown. There are scheduled flights to the rest of the United States, Mexico, Hawaii, the United Kingdom, Canada, and starting in December 2012, Japan. It serves as a focus city for Southwest Airlines. Voters rejected a proposal to move the airport to Miramar Marine Corps Air Station in November 2006.
Other airports include Brown Field Municipal Airport (Brown Field) and Montgomery Field. Aeroméxico provides a shuttle service from San Diego to General Abelardo L. Rodríguez International Airport in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico.
The Port of San Diego manages the maritime operations of San Diego harbor. Cruise ships arrive and depart from San Diego's cruise ship terminal on B Street Pier. Carnival Cruise Lines and Holland America have home port cruise ships in San Diego during the winter season. A second cruise terminal on Broadway Pier opened in 2010.
San Diego is home to General Dynamics' National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO), the largest shipyard on the West Coast of the United States. It is capable of building and repairing large ocean-going vessels. The yard constructs commercial cargo ships and auxiliary vessels for the U.S. Navy and Military Sealift Command, which it has served since 1960.
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