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Apr 12

Transit Partner Highlight: Santa Fe Trails

Posted on April 12, 2023 at 12:00 AM by Riann Martinez

City bus in front of a CathedralThe New Mexico Rail Runner Express connects to many buses along the 100-mile rail corridor between Belen and Santa Fe. This month, we’re highlighting transit partner Santa Fe Trails, which operates buses throughout the City Different.

“We serve the city of Santa Fe,” said Thomas Martinez, Director of Operations and Maintenance for Santa Fe Trails. “Currently we have 12 routes. We are doing a combination of on-demand and regular fixed route service.”

Santa Fe Trails also operates Santa Fe Ride, an origin-to-destination service for individuals who are ADA eligible, seniors, and veterans.

Rail Runner Connection

Rail Runner passengers heading to Santa Fe often reach out to Rio Metro’s Customer Service Department to ask about options for getting around the city when they get there. According to Martinez, the Santa Fe Trails Route 2 bus is the best option for a transit connection.

“We coordinate with the train times with our Route 2 Cerrillos bus. It stops at the Santa Fe Depot near Tomasita’s Restaurant, and also at the South Capitol Rail Runner Station,” said Martinez.

According to Martinez, it is much easier to catch the Route 2 at the South Capitol Station, as there’s a designated bus stop that’s visible as you exit the train. Route 2 takes passengers to destinations along Cerrillos Rd., including the Downtown Transit Center, which is just steps away from the Santa Fe Plaza.

What About Meow Wolf?

Young child boarding a city busThe Route 2 bus also provides Rail Runner passengers with a connection to the popular Meow Wolf. “It will drop you off on Cerrillos Rd. about half a block away,” said Martinez. Please note that Meow Wolf has timed entry for tickets, so plan your trip accordingly.

How Do I Connect? 

Passengers exiting the train at the South Capitol Station will easily spot the Route 2 bus shelter just steps away from the station platform.

Those exiting at the Santa Fe Depot need to take a short walk east to Guadalupe St. To head towards the Plaza, the inbound bus stop is located near the intersection of Guadalupe St. and Montezuma Ave. Passengers traveling to Meow Wolf will find the outbound bus stop near the intersection of Guadalupe St. and Garfield St.

Anyone with a valid Rail Runner pass can ride the Santa Fe Trails Route 2 bus free – just show your pass to the bus operator. For those that ride the train free, ask your Rail Runner ticket agent for a bus transfer. Otherwise, bus passes are $1 for one way or $2 for an all-day pass.

Santa Fe Pick-Up Shuttle Update

For several years, Santa Fe Trails operated a free circular shuttle called the Santa Fe Pick-Up. During the Covid public health emergency, this service, like so many others, was discontinued. There’s good news on the horizon, though, for passengers that were accustomed to hopping on the Pick-Up.

“As we’re getting our workforce back up, we are implementing our downtown circular shuttle again,” said Martinez. While he couldn’t give an exact start date, he speculated that a modified version of the service should be up and running by summer. The plan is to serve the downtown area, including popular tourist destinations and Museum Hill.

Plan Your Trip

City bus in front of a bus stop shaped like a treeThose planning to travel to Santa Fe on the Rail Runner can call Rio Metro’s Customer Service Department for help with a trip plan. The representatives are available by phone at 866-795-7245 Monday through Friday 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., Saturdays 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., and Sundays 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Visit www.riometro.org to view the train schedule.

Martinez also encourages passengers to contact Santa Fe Trails for help planning their bus ride. “Passengers can call 505-955-2001 and our agents will assist them in a trip plan,” said Martinez. According to the Santa Fe Trails website, Call Center hours are Monday through Friday 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturdays 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sundays 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

For a full list of Santa Fe Trails schedules and maps, information about the Santa Fe Ride service, and details about discounts and fare-free eligibility, visit their website at www.santafenm.gov/public-works/transit. Also, keep an eye out on their website for information on special service for popular events like the International Folk Art Market, Spanish Market, and Indian Market.