Suisun-Fairfield has a historic depot that opened in 1914 first became an Amtrak station in 1978 when there were just two trains running per day between Martinez and Davis with only the Coast Starlight and California Zephyr. Only the California Zephyr began stopping here. The Coast Starlight has never been regularly scheduled to stop at Suisun-Fairfield. Service was first supplemented by the short lived Spirit of California, a state supported overnight train with a sleeper that ran from Sacramento to Los Angeles via the Coastal Route from 1981 to 1983. It took until December 12, 1991 for the station to receive additional service again and on this date the at first three daily round-trips Capitols entered service. These trains are now the Capitol Corridor that stop at Suisun-Fairfield 15 times per weekday in each direction (at one point there were 16 trains per weekday) and 11 times per weekend day. The Capitol Corridor service has led to the California Zephyr now bypassing Suisun. A few years after the Capitols began the station became discharge only westbound, receive only eastbound (prohibiting intermediate travel from here into the Bay Area) and with May 1999 timetable California Zephyr service to Suisun-Fairfield is discontinued with all long-distance trains now bypassing the station and only the Capitol Corridor providing service.
The station has two tracks with a side platform along the east track and pedestrian grade-crossings leading across this track to a narrow island platform for boarding trains on the west track. Normally southbound trains stop at this far platform and northbound trains at the closer platform. Two trains can't stop at the station at the same time with this platform design. All platforms are the modern low-level ones to accommodate easy boarding to California Cars (except for gaps in northbound platform where ramps lead down to track level for the pedestrian crossings). Over the northern end of the platform is a highway overpass for Highway 12, a mobile lift is nestled out in the open beneath it. Just beyond this is the historic depot. The rest of the platform continues with a grey fence and no further shelter (just the porch of the depot and highway overpass). There is a modern 'Thank You For Riding Amtrak' Information Display just beyond the depot. There are very few other signs for the station. Blue Pointless arrow signs are still at each end of the platform saying Suisun-Fairfield and the roof of the depot has a couple non-authentic white signs with green typed text.
The depot is a former SP depot in the 'colonnade style.' The single story building is painted off white with cream colored trim. In front of the depot is a wide porch for shelter with columns holding up the green roof that covers both the building and shelter. Inside the depot is a coffee bar open 5:00am to 9:30am weekdays and a separate Greyhound Agency has a window that keeps the depot open from 9:30am to 6:30pm weekdays. Whiteout for the Greyhound information in the windows show that there were previous weekend hours that Amtrak hadn't bothered to update when I visited on a weekend and would have made different arrangements to visit had I know the depot was closed. Looking through the windows a lot of the seating seems to be cafe style tables. Amtrak has just two QuikTrak Machines, one inside and another directly outside on the porch (a good touch Amtrak, put them outside more often). Signs outside the depot and at two unique entrance pillars (that have mini-station roofs covering them) have the logos of DeltaBreeze (local bus), Greyhound, the Capitol Corridor (a sticker added later) and Amtrak. Streetside of the depot has a Suisun City (a clock) Train Depot sign above the doors. Continuing from across the driveway that loops around from Main Street is a small pedestrian plaza across to Main Street and the Suisun City Amtrak Park & Ride Lot across the street. Just south of the depot the driveway becomes two lanes separated by a pedestrian island. In this island are two pink shelters with columns like the depot and where Greyhound and other connecting buses stop.
All photos taken on 16 June, 2013
Last Updated: 24 July, 2013