Wednesday, September 18, 2002

ARCHIVES - 09/18/02

SEPTA appears to be starting the phase out of the 3000-series Neos. At least two have been confirmed to be at Midvale scrap yard (3080 and 3094). This tends to tell me that either SEPTA is much closer to getting the 5600-series New Flyers or that those buses are falling apart.

A large number of accessibe Neos and NABIs were recently swapped from Frankford to Comly, with Frankford getting some 3100s from Southern and some 3000s from Comly in exchange. There seems to be no reasonable logic for this move, since only the 3 trackless routes (which are busing for at least the next 12 months) and the J & K buses are the only non-accessible bus routes which operate out of Frankford. On a related note, some 3300s are being swiped from Frontier and appearing on routes at Southern.

SEPTA announced that it will operate express trains on the Broad Street Line for Sunday's Eagles game against the hated Dallas Cowboys. Of course, there are no express trains to Pattison for tonight's Rolling Stones concert at the Vet, nor is there any mention of the fact that SEPTA offers direct service to the Tower Theater (across from 69 St Terminal at 69 St & Ludlow) for Sunday's concert, where about 3,500 Stones fans are expected to converge. On Sunday afternoon and evening, expect very heavy traffic along 69 St and Market St, which could cause lengthy delays on the 108 and 113 buses, and possibly on the El Shuttle, 21 and 65 buses, which reach 69 St Terminal via Market St.

Detours are also the order of the day in West Chester on Sunday as West Chester Recreation presents the Chester County Restaurant Festival. With the eastbound re-routing of the 104 bus via High St, I have not been made aware of any detour routing for westbound travel to West Chester University. If past history is any indication, I wouldn't expect SEPTA to go out of their way to help people in West Chester get around the festival site, which will have Gay St closed between Matlack and New Sts, and High St closed between Market and Chestnut. (See, the old 104 routing was much simpler in that westbound buses could simply detour via Chestnut to New St.)

And now, the Frankford Terminal web site is pleased to present the latest ridiculous statement from SEPTA's chief spokesman/apologist/liar Richard Maloney. Maloney recently told the Jewish Exponent newspaper an incredible whopper about the Schuylkill Valley rail project. "When it's in full service, it will serve approximately 50,000 passengers a day," he said. "That's about half [of what we currently serve] on our commuter-rail system, so it's a lot." 50,000 riders between Reading and Philadelphia? I have the gut feeling that SEPTA is just pulling numbers out of thin air in order to justify the nearly $1.9 billion price tag.

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