Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Tell us about your regional rail commute

I hope you enjoyed your holiday.

Now brace yourself for the commute from hell.

That is if you normally utilize the regional rails to get in and out of the city.

Late Friday SEPTA announced they had discovered a serious flaw in their new Silverliner V rail cars, a crack in a stabilizer bar. Bottom line? The transit giant said it would take a third of its fleet of rail cars out of service.

The weekend didn't provide much of a challenge.

That should change this morning.

Give SEPTA credit for this: They are not attempting to sugar-coat anything. They freely admit today's first normal business day could prove to be a challenge as they attempt to ferry the normal 65,000 commuters in and out of the city on a regional rail system that now likely will be capable at best of getting handling 35-40,000 riders.

Think of it this way: It will kind of like having a championship parade in the city - without a championship.

During the last Phillies World Series party, many trains filled up early, in the western-most stops, and once full simply blew past packed stations where fans were left waiting for another train.

SEPTA today will operate on a weekend basis. For all the details on SEPTA's schedule, click here. We want to know about your issues on your morning commute. Have you decided to take another route? Are you going to bus it into the city? Will you join those who simply have decided to drive into the city? Will you head to 69th Street and try to utilize the Market-Frankford El to get downtown? Are you leaving the house earlier in hopes of getting an earlier train? You can follow our live coverage here.

Tell us what you encounter by using the hashtag #SEPTA or #septatrouble.

I can tell you that as of 6:15 a.m. there are still plenty of parking spots available here at the Primos station.

This is actually the second major disturbance for riders on the Media-Elwyn line this summer. That line already is ending - or starting for inbound commuters - at Swarthmore Station for a renovation project on the Crum Creek Viaduct. Riders who want to get farther west to the four final stations on the line can either drive to Swarthmore or take a shuttle bus.

SEPTA General Manager Jeff Knueppel was correctly blunt in his assessment of the situation in a Sunday update, predicting Tuesday "will be rough."

"We ask for our riders' patience during this difficult time," Knueppel added. Unfortunately, that's not something that is usually in a great supply among harried commuters.

And keep in mind, this is not just a one-day or even a one-week event. SEPTA believes the system will be operating at much less than peak capacity for most of the summer.

That's what happens when you take 13,000 seats out of the system.

For most of the weekend I could only think of one thing: Hey, it could be worse. What if this had happened last summer prior to the visit of Pope Francis?

Pack your patience this morning. It's going to be a bumpy ride - regardless how you plan to get into the city.

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home