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ComoSeaYeah t1_j9v2km7 wrote

One big reason this is happening is because of the huge increase in residential building (condos/apartments and houses) in the western burbs where they’re planning on having stations. There’s no real alternative to get from these burbs to the city except via 422 and 76, both of which weren’t made to handle the kind of traffic this population growth requires. To remedy that they’d have to expand those highways or work with the existing tracks laid down decades ago and make it a western regional line. I can’t imagine an expansion of those highways would’ve been a cheaper alternative and folks who live in the towns (or nearby) where they plan on having stations have been lobbying for regional rail for years.


ParallelPeterParker t1_j9v5fo9 wrote

>I can’t imagine an expansion of those highways would’ve been a cheaper alternative and folks who live in the towns (or nearby) where they plan on having stations have been lobbying for regional rail for years.

I think this is a far more reasonable assessment than most. But the alternative highways would be federal dollars. I seem to recall some discussion of one of the recent omnibus bills including these funds and hopefully they're coming from there.


PhiladelphiaCounty t1_j9vft1h wrote

Philly could probably use another way into the city agreed. that said new roads only really alleviate congestion for a little until people start driving more and replenish the traffic. Public transit is the only way to really keep traffic down.


TimX24968B t1_j9xywt7 wrote

i76 being between a river and cliff certainly doesnt help make it any easier to expand too.


DuvalHeart t1_j9vfq8z wrote

They are. This is a Biden administration win. (whether you agree with this specific project the win is funding non-private vehicle transit)


ADFC t1_j9v5sir wrote

Very unfortunate the Schuylkill Valley Metro plan failed in the early 2000s. Could’ve avoided this boondoggle while easing the possibility of Amtrak expanding their services to Reading by renovating the tracks ahead of time…


smokeyleo13 t1_j9vqj4p wrote

What would that have entailed?


Nexis4Jersey t1_j9x2pn5 wrote

I think it's only a few roundtrips per day, ending at 30th street. The Amtrak and PA State Rail plans seem to diverge a decent amount.


DoctorSteve t1_j9vqiqo wrote

Hopefully they can create some kind of KOP transit hub and - if they can find or create space - continue the train into other directions. Like to the Northeast, or to cough Reading, or to Exton.

You shouldn't need to always go to 30th Street to go anywhere


ILikeMyGrassBlue t1_j9xswyo wrote

Reading was in progress (sort of) last time I checked. They were setting up a committee to get started on making the proposals or whatever. Very early stages, but they’ve been trying to get that going for a couple years.


DoctorSteve t1_j9ymhae wrote

Yeah but it's extremely likely a train to Reading will just be another spoke on the wheel. I am looking for a second wheel option. I'd like to get on in Exton and go directly to Bryn Athyn.


_token_black t1_j9vo5zv wrote

An extension of the Manayunk RR line would be a better use of those $$ than this.


_heisenberg__ t1_j9x540w wrote

Honestly always thought that this plan was the extension of that line. That fucking blows that it’s not.


Nexis4Jersey t1_j9x997j wrote

And it would provide a direct link from NW/CC to KOP.


That_Obligatior16 t1_j9vlhls wrote

I live in those western burbs, and agree with everything you've said here.

But I think all of those problems are solved FAR more effectively by putting the budget for the KOP rail extension into accelerating reimagined regional rail, as well as making the investments necessary for successfully launching and then increasing frequency on the planned Amtrak line to Reading.


UpsideMeh t1_j9vrgs6 wrote

It’s also that all areas septa services have equal say in projects, with the 6 or so outside Philly areas all coming together to vote down Philly projects in favor of projects outside the city. This is even when Philly makes up over 90% of ridership.


AbsentEmpire t1_j9wbr4k wrote

This is bullshit, SEPTA does not block Philadelphia projects.

SEPTA rebuilt the entire elevated section of the MFL line not that long ago, just signed a contract for a new trolley fleet, is making all subway stations ADA accessible, and is looking for a new fleet of subway cars.


phillyallthewaydown t1_j9x1669 wrote

I don't think they were saying SEPTA blocks Philadelphia projects. I'm guessing they were talking about the 11 SEPTA board members. There are 2 board members from each county +1 additional member. Philly is denser and more of its residents utilize public transportation than any of the other 4 counties, yet they all have the same number of board members. So Philly projects can get voted down more easily in favor of suburban projects that don't affect as many riders


AbsentEmpire t1_j9x8c5k wrote

Again that's just pure bullshit, as I pointed to already in terms of recent and coming major capital projects.

The Philadelphia board members have veto power, they have disproportionate power on the board compared to the other members, additionally most of SEPTA's capital spending had been on city projects.

Everyone in here trying to push this conspiracy theory that the SEPTA board has it out for Philly, and that the suburban members block funding projects in the city is an idiot who who clearly doesn't know shit about SEPTA, how it operates, how it's funded, what it's agency objectives are, and what it's done already.

Quite frankly so many of the takes in this thread are from people who just to moved to Philly 5 minutes ago. That or they're actually still children who don't know shit about how SEPTA works and what it done just in the last 20 years.

They certainly don't know the dynamics of the metropolitan region, or how major infrastructure projects get done in the real world.


phillyallthewaydown t1_j9xekdp wrote

It would be helpful if you shared some resources for everyone rather than calling them idiots and children and accusing them of conspiracy theories. You may know all the things, but many of the answers and details aren't readily available.

How does SEPTA work? How does it operate? How is it funded? What are it's objectives? What has it done in the last 20 years? How does the veto power and the ability to override the veto work? What are the dynamics of metropolitan area? How do major infrastructure projects get done in the real world?

I have a slightly above average understanding of how SEPTA works and yet I can't even answer all those questions. I'm not a child, idiot, or conspiracy theorist, and I have lived in and around Philly my entire life. I'd argue that very few people understand how infrastructure projects as large and unique as the KOP rail line get done in the real world, even plenty of people involved.

My biggest question is why a project projected to move 10k passengers per day would be prioritized over a project projected to move closer to 100k passengers. Similar cost estimates. Questioning that is not a conspiracy theory, it's a legitimate question about how cost benefit decisions are made


BenderIsGreat64 t1_j9vtsas wrote

>This is even when Philly makes up over 90% of ridership.

Got a source for this?


Pattern_Is_Movement t1_j9vfkew wrote

While I agree we need more rail infrastructure, worth noting the population in Philly is still several hundred thousand less than it was in the 70's.


shapu t1_j9vgat3 wrote

Right, but there are more people in the metro area. And those people in the metro area are quite frankly a lot more likely to take the train into the city than they are to move into the city.


BenderIsGreat64 t1_j9vthdc wrote

SEPTA seves South Eastern Pennsylvania, not just Philly, and Bucks county alone has over 200k more people than it did in the 1970s, pretty sure MontCo population has gone up even more than Bucks.


CerealJello t1_j9ydcqr wrote

As much as I'd rather this money go toward infill lines within the city, interurban lines like this are seriously lacking in the US. Connecting a growing population hub to the city center with rail is a great move. Especially when it'll only cost $2/ride.

With the trolley modernization, SEPTA is looking to connect the 15 to 69th St. That'll expand access to KOP jobs for people living along that line as well.

Edit: it sucks we have to pick and choose which of these projects get funded. In a better world, all SEPTA's expansion and upgrade plans would be paid for.


JMDeutsch t1_j9yfmyi wrote

I may be wrong but I think most of that old track has been ripped up and was sold off to pay creditors.


frupp110 t1_j9vp0vg wrote

I had an idea a couple of days ago. I live in the western burbs, so these aren’t the roads I travel everyday, so I curious your thought. First, I preface that I-76 south of 476 is worst stretch of highway in the state. It’s stuck between a river and a rock wall with no where to expand. Here’s my thought. Make 76 south of 476 one way. Use all of the lanes to go into the city only. Okay, so how to get them back? Make the Blue Route one way, as well, just the opposite direction. Expand the section of 95 between the two to compensate for the increased travel. On ramps and exit ramps would all need to be rethought, but how does this broad stroke of an idea sound?


Glass_Fensters t1_j9wbxnw wrote

This is a wild idea and it’s hard to articulate how bad and impractical it is but I think we should try it just to see what happens.


mister_pringle t1_j9w92lu wrote

> but how does this broad stroke of an idea sound?

Like you have no idea what north/south vs East/west are or the mileage involved for such a silly idea.


frupp110 t1_j9we082 wrote

You are correct that 76 is labeled East/West but I always think of it as N/S because I grew up off the North East Extension and Philly is just always considered “South”.

I’m terms of “silly”. Is it silly for literally hundreds of people sit idly on a stretch of blacktop while their engines idle needlessly, or is better to drive a little further half the time and likely get home quicker?