E Embarcadero

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E Embarcadero
Cars 130 and 1010 at the Ferry Building stop. Notice they have the same livery.
Type Heritage streetcar
System San Francisco Municipal Railway
Locale San Francisco, California
Termini Jones and Beach (initial)
Fort Mason (planned)
4th and King Station (initial)
3rd and 19th Street (planned)
Stations 18
Opened January 10, 1998 (temporary light rail shuttle service)
August 31, 2008 (trial service)[1]
August 1, 2015 (weekend service)
April 23, 2016 (weeklong service)
Owner San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA)
Operator(s) San Francisco Municipal Railway
Character Route mostly in own right-of-way (e.g. in street median)
Rolling stock Double-ended historic Muni streetcars
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
(standard gauge)
Electrification Overhead lines, 600 V DC
Highest elevation At-grade, street-level
Route map
Fort Mason Extension
proposed extension
Fort Mason
Fort Mason Tunnel
Van Ness
BSicon CCAR.svgCable Car
Hyde and Beach
Jones and Beach  F 
Jefferson and Taylor
Beach and Mason
Jefferson and Powell Pier 41
Beach and Stockton
BART  Transbay Tube
Market San Francisco Ferry Building
N Judah logo.svg T Third Street logo.svg Market Street Subway
I-80 (Bay Bridge)
2nd & King
T Third Street logo.svg Central Subway (2018)
enlarge… 4th & King N Judah logo.svg Caltrain
 proposed extension
Mission Rock
UCSF Mission Bay
Mission Bay Loop
T Third Street logo.svg

The E Embarcadero is a light rail line that is the San Francisco Municipal Railway's second heritage streetcar line in San Francisco, California. Trial service first ran during the Sunday Streets events on The Embarcadero in 2008.[1] The line initially ran on weekends only,[2][3] but expanded to weeklong service in late April 2016.[4]


The initial routing of the line is nearly identical to the 32 Embarcadero bus line, which was discontinued after the F Market & Wharves line began operating along the Embarcadero in 2000.[citation needed] It runs the length of the Embarcadero and San Francisco's segment of the Bay Trail, along pre-existing track used by the F Market & Wharves historic streetcar as well as the N Judah and T Third Street Muni Metro lines and previously unused track bypassing Market Street Subway's Embarcadero portal. Service runs from Jones Street and Jefferson Street in Fisherman's Wharf to near the N Judah's platform at Caltrain's King Street and 4th Street Station in the Mission Bay neighborhood – the last trains of the day run to near the adjacent T Third platform at 4th and Berry. Since there is no loop at the Caltrain station, only double-ended streetcars are able to operate on the line until the 19th Street loop is built.[citation needed]

In the future, the line may extend northwest past Aquatic Park and through an unused railroad tunnel to Fort Mason.


Though the right-of-way will be shared with the two Muni Metro lines on the South of Market segment, the stations themselves will not be shared with Muni Metro because historic cars cannot access elevated median boarding platforms. For this reason, existing sidewalk-level stops adjacent to each raised central light-rail stop will be utilized for the E line. For stops north of Market, the new line will use those of the existing F Market & Wharves line.


Muni's original E streetcar line was the E Union line, running north from the Ferry Building via The Embarcadero to Washington/Jackson streets, where it turned west to eventually reach the Presidio. This line was discontinued in 1947.[5]

Proposals for historic streetcar service along The Embarcadero were first put forward in 1974, and the first mention of separate E Embarcadero and F Market lines was in 1981.[6]

Light rail service on the section of The Embarcadero south of Folsom Street and on King Street to the Caltrain Depot began on January 10, 1998,[7] using a Muni Metro shuttle line between Embarcadero Station and the Caltrain station. This temporary line was designated E Embarcadero, and it was discontinued when it was replaced in August 1998 by an extension of the N Judah line.[8][9][10] In 2007 the new T Third Street line also began operating on this extension.

Historic streetcar service on The Embarcadero north of Don Chee Way began in March 2000 when the F Market & Wharves line was extended to Fisherman's Wharf. That extension and the 1998 light rail extension to the Caltrain Depot make up almost the entirety of the E line route; they were connected by unused tracks on The Embarcadero between Don Chee Way and Folsom Street. The new E Embarcadero line operated on a temporary basis during the 2013 America's Cup racing. On March 28, 2014, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) officially approved plans for weekend-only service of the E Embarcadero heritage streetcar line starting in summer 2015, with weeklong service starting the next year.[2][3] Weekend operation officially began on August 1, 2015,[11] and weeklong service began on April 23, 2016.[4]

Planned extension[edit]

This line may benefit from the National Park Service's planned extension of the Embarcadero streetcar through the existing Fort Mason Tunnel and into Fort Mason Center, serving Fort Mason Center and the Marina district, identified by the NPS as areas with "inadequate regional transit access" and "limited transportation options for transit-dependent residents,"[12] and providing those areas with a rail connection to regional transportation networks via the Market Street Subway and 4th and King Caltrain Station.


  1. ^ a b "E-Embarcadero Line Service for Sunday Streets". streetcar.org. Market Street Railway. August 28, 2008. Retrieved 2014-11-07. 
  2. ^ a b Bowen, Douglas John (March 31, 2014). "MUNI eyes new E train route". Railway Age. Simmons-Boardman Publishing Inc. Retrieved 2014-07-29. 
  3. ^ a b "E-Line Finally Budgeted...For 2016!". streetcar.org. Market Street Railway. March 30, 2014. Retrieved 2014-11-07. 
  4. ^ a b Hyden, Rachel (April 13, 2016). "Better, more frequent service coming April 23!". San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA). Retrieved April 22, 2016. 
  5. ^ "San Francisco Transit Routes". Chicago Transit & Railfan Website. 2009. Retrieved 2013-03-04. 
  6. ^ "Historic Streetcars". San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA). Retrieved 2013-12-01. 
  7. ^ Epstein, Edward (January 9, 1998). "Embarcadero Line On Track Tomorrow". San Francisco Chronicle. p. A-17. Retrieved March 20, 2009. 
  8. ^ Taylor, Michael (April 6, 1998). "PAGE ONE -- Muni's New E-Line No Beeline / Trains more tardy, irregular than buses - SFGate". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved March 27, 2013. 
  9. ^ Epstein, Edward (August 26, 1998). "Brown Tries To Soothe Muni Riders / Service on N-Judah line has been abysmal all week - SFGate". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved March 27, 2013. 
  10. ^ Epstein, Edward (January 9, 1998). "Muni's Embarcadero Streetcar Line Set to Make First Runs / First of improvements promised for this year". San Francisco Chronicle. Hearst Communications, Inc. Retrieved 2013-12-01. 
  11. ^ Cestone, Vince (July 31, 2015). "New Muni E-Embarcadero Line to begin service this weekend". KRON-TV. Young Broadcasting. Retrieved August 4, 2015. 
  12. ^ "Final Environmental Impact Statement for Extension of F-Line Streetcar Service to Fort Mason Center". Golden Gate National Recreation Area San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park. Retrieved 2012-08-11. 

External links[edit]