Three Lines in the Valley

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority ("VTA") light rail system consists of three lines.  Two routes are long, and pass through downtown San Jose.  One line starts in Mountain View, northwest of the city, and ends at Winchester, to the southwest.  The other major route is rather hook-shaped, starting at Alum Rock, east of downtown, then heading northwest before it curves sharply south near Tasman.  It then continues to Santa Teresa, far southeast of downtown.  These two routes share fourteen stations between Tasman and downtown.  The third route is surely the shortest light rail line in the country, a shuttle between the delightfully named transfer station at Ohlone/Chynoweth and Almaden, two short stops away. 

This view is just north of downtown.  The location looks toward center city, and the tracks ahead soon separate into one-way running through the center city.  The line dips beneath a freight railroad and a second overpass for a street.