The 215 Rapid bus averages only 12 mph. It’s not much faster than a cyclist. Offboard ticket purchasing and allowing all passengers to board at any door could speed up service. There are more radical — and controversial — solutions San Diego could try, too.

The cost of SANDAG’s highest-profile projects, the Mid-Coast Corridor Transit Project to extend the Blue Line north to the UCSD campus, is especially high for a light-rail project. But there is a change SANDAG could consider that would reduce the price tag and take advantage of both existing light-rail lines and the Coaster rail line.

The stretch from Los Angeles to San Diego is one of America’s busiest travel corridors. Yet the plans for California’s high-speed rail prioritizes the route from Los Angeles to San Francisco instead. There are steps Southern California officials could take in the meantime, however, that would drastically improve rail services and encourage more people to ride.

Processing...