The Bus Revolution Has Been Revised in Philadelphia

The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority went back to the drawing board with its Bus Revolution system redesign after an initial round of feedback completed earlier this year.

2 minute read

September 4, 2023, 5:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Joseph Sohm / Shutterstock

The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) has released a revised draft of the first comprehensive bus system redesign in six decades, the nest step in the ongoing “Bus Revolution” component of the ongoing “SEPTA Forward” planning process in Philadelphia.

Planetizen picked up the news back in March 2023 when SEPTA announced it would be revising an initial draft of the plan that would have reduced the number of routes in the city from 125 to 99.

“Intended to modernize the system and make service more frequent, the new Bus Revolution draft makes changes to two earlier versions. The plan aims to trim the overall number of routes; to increase by 30% the number of routes with 15 minutes or fewer between buses; and would create several new bus routes,” reports Thomas Fitzgerald for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

“The most recent proposal has a total of 106 fixed routes, down from the current 125. It has 43 frequent routes compared to 33 in the existing network. In eight suburban zones, SEPTA would run on-demand bus service, similar to Uber or Lyft, in areas where there is demand for transit but not enough to sustain a robust schedule,” adds Fitzgerald.

SEPTA planners will now a host a series of public meetings to gather feedback on the revised draft, but SEPTA is not accepting any substantial relitigation of the plan, according to a source quoted in the article.

The updated version of the plan is available on the Bus Revolution website. The Bus Revolution system redesign is one of three prongs in the SEPTA Forward planning process, which also includes Reimagining Regional Rail and the Trolley Modernization project.

Bus system redesigns have been making news in the past few weeks. Portland, Oregon launched the first phase if its “Forward Together” system redesign in SW Portland at the end of August.

Friday, September 1, 2023 in The Philadelphia Inquirer

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