Location and Transportation
With two major railroads, extensive freeways, an international airport and several smaller airparks — the City of Fresno (centrally located between Los Angeles and Sacramento) is considered a transportation hub.
Interweaving freeways make it convenient for motorists to travel throughout the city and provide access to all of the city’s neighborhoods. State Road (SR) 99 offers a direct north-south route to Los Angeles (south) and to San Francisco (north), and it’s an easy drive to the coastal Interstate 5 highway. Other major arteries include north-south SR 41 and 145, east-west SR 180 and east-west SR 168. The roadway system makes it convenient for the trucking industry to conduct business, and both the Sante Fe and Southern Pacific rail companies provide service to the valley.
Fresno’s Area Express (FAX) is a fast and efficient transit system (with a fleet of more than 100 vehicles) that offers 18 fixed-route bus lines that stop at high schools, shopping centers, government offices, hospitals and more. The Silver Sundays Program (an arm of the service that began operation in July 2004) provides people who are 62 years and older with unlimited Sunday access on FAX fixed route buses. The Handy Ride para transit service, a shared ride, curb-to-curb service, is available upon request for those who are unable to use FAX due to a disability.
Ground travel is also available through the Fresno County Rural Transit Agency (FCRTA), which provides bus service to the elderly, the disabled, low-income residents and residents in rural Fresno County. Greyhound (which operates a terminal on Broadway Street) provides daily service from Fresno, and also serves the Fresno County cities of Firebaugh, Kerman, Kingsburg, Mendota and Selma. Rail travel is convenient from the new Fresno Amtrak Station, which operates 10 trains daily out of its downtown station.
Traveling by air is convenient thanks to the Fresno Yosemite International Airport (FYI), which is owned and operated by the City of Fresno. Located roughly six miles northeast of downtown Fresno, the airport serves the six-county region with jet service to major destinations and connection hubs. There are also nearly 4,000 people who fly on chartered trips in and out of Yosemite each year. The airport offers dozens of daily flights and the convenience of numerous passenger services — such as a restaurant, cocktail lounge, gift shop, barbershop, video arcade, travel agency and more. The number of passengers using this facility has steadily increased each year, and has surpassed the 1,038,000 mark — the most dramatic increase seen after major renovations to the airport in 2001.
FYI is also home to three military aviation activities — the California Air National Guard, California Army National Guard and the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.
The Fresno Chandler Executive Airport, located near the downtown area, is also owned and operated by the city, and serves as a reliever general aviation airport. The Sierra Skypark (located on Herndon Avenue) is a privately owned, public-use airport for general aviation planes — either single or twin engine.