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Golden Gate Transit Celebrates 50 Years...and Counting

November 8, 2022 06:00 AM
Greyhound Bus from Original Fleet

On Saturday, January 1, 1972 , Golden Gate Transit transbay service began with 152 coaches - 20 leased from Greyhound Lines and 132 GMC “new look” model coaches that Golden Gate Transit purchased. At launch, Golden Gate Transit offered limited service in Marin County: A Ferry shuttle service to Sausalito & Tiburon terminals, and one route serving central and northern Marin.

On October 6, 2022, Golden Gate Transit celebrated 50 years of service with an employee appreciation event at the San Rafael Bus Yard. The festivities included coffee with GGT mentors, a bus roadeo and obstacle course, classic Golden Gate Transit buses on display, and operator safety awards. The event celebrated 50 years of Golden Gate Transit service, which began in 1972, and brought together staff and board members to commemorate the anniversary. 


Below are a few key dates in
Golden Gate Transit History. 

By August 1972:  Golden Gate Transit operations grew to 175 buses.

December 1974: The first-ever special holiday bus, decorated by bus maintenance staff, hit the road.

1982: Special bus service to San Francisco 49ers football games at Candlestick Park started. 

1989: A Bus Passengers Advisory Committee was formed to assist the District in maintaining attractive and effective bus services.

October 1989: In the month following the October 17, 1989, Loma Prieta Earthquake, which closed the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, Golden Gate Transit transbay bus ridership increased by as much as 8 percent. 

January 24, 1992: The official grand opening of the San Rafael Transit Center.

March 7, 1993: Golden Gate Transit Route 40 started, linking Marin County with the East Bay across the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. Today we call it Route 580. 

1999: Two-postion bike racks were added to the front exterior of all 40-foot Golden Gate Transit buses.

June 15, 2009: Golden Gate Transit launched a new express Route 101 between Santa Rosa and San Francisco. This route is still going strong today!

August 2014: Golden Gate Transit customers began enjoying onboard WiFi service. The free, easy-to-use service allowed customers to check email or surf the Internet while they rode the bus. 

January 10-12, 2015: During a 3-day closure of the Golden Gate Bridge to install a moveable median barrier, Golden Gate Transit buses were the only passenger vehicles permitted over the Bridge between San Francisco and the North Bay.

December 2017: In support of local families and communities affected by the recent North Bay wildfires, Golden Gate Transit's 2017 holiday bus proudly featured the words #northbaystrong and "Strength in Community" and operated in service throughout the North Bay during the holiday season. 

May 2019: Golden Gate Transit began rolling out 67 new hybrid buses to its fleet.

...and counting! Here's to many more years of serving the beautiful Bay Area! Happy Anniversary Golden Gate Transit! 

View the full Golden Gate Transit timeline here >

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