On Thursday I took the new W line light rail train all the way from the Jefferson County government center here in Golden to Union Station in Denver. The whole ride took about 45 minutes, plus another 10 on the 16th Street shuttle bus to meet RAS for lunch.
All I can say about it is it’s a great idea…in theory. But it’s just a little too slow to get to the city. The problem? Two or three too many stops, which in themselves aren’t long, but they do add up. If they closed up some of these smaller stops, it would shave at least 10 minutes off the commute time. Better yet, RTD should think about scheduling an express train that goes from Golden to Denver, with maybe one stop in between.
The light blue line was where I was heading:
Here’s what the train looks like, outside:
Anyway, this is about the most scenic part of the trip – the flyaway that goes over 6th Avenue and looks over the Rocky Mountain foothills:
…and another crossing of 6th Avenue going over a cantilever bridge:
There’s not too much scenery to enjoy along the way. It’s mostly residential neighborhoods and industrial landscape. So if you do ride this line, it’s probably best to bring a book. It’s definitely a great time to bring your smartphone and keep up with your email.
Finally, I got to Denver…
…with the end of the line.
If you’re not pressed for time, this is a good way to get from the west Metro area to downtown. After all, just like this sign proclaims: